Engage, the National Association for Gallery Education, is delighted to announce that Children’s Art Week is back for 2019, running from Saturday 8 until Sunday 16 June. This annual campaign encourages venues and schools to participate by hosting an event, or running an activity that captures children’s imaginations and encourages creativity. Year after year Children’s Art Week creates an opportunity for children to engage with the arts and schools are being urged to take part.
There are countless benefits for children and young people in working with artworks, artists and galleries, demonstrated through ground-breaking programmes run by Engage as well as many other bodies. Many schools use the annual campaign as a way to bring more arts activity into the school curriculum, whether by working with an artist, curating an exhibition of children’s work, or dedicating that week to a programme of arts activity. Although most Children’s Art Week events are open to the public, schools are welcome to organise events that are open to pupils and parents only. The Engage website features lots of practical resources for teachers and schools on how to get involved.
In previous years both primary and secondary schools have been involved in various ways. One such school was Newport Primary School which used the event to invite pupils to create literary inspired murals in the school courtyard. Feedback from the event was overwhelmingly positive:
“Working with a local artist and education specialist the children in Year 6 created four mural panels to develop an inside/outside reading area. The writers chosen for the panels were selected in consultation with the school’s Children’s Council. The work was seen as a legacy from the Year 6 leavers as well as being a creative way to raise the profile of writers for children within the school population. It also continued a tradition of having artist and craftspeople working in school.” Newport Primary School.
The profile of the initiative has grown year on year which was evidenced last year when Children’s Laureate, Lauren Child, signed up as an ambassador and used Children’s Art Week as the perfect time to launch ‘Staring Into Space’, a set of six resources inspired by books, to encourage and inspire children’s’ creativity.
Speaking about her involvement Lauren said:
“Nurturing creativity is at the heart of what I represent as Waterstones Children’s Laureate, because I believe that making space and time for children to be creative is an essential part of a child’s education. Children’s Art Week is a fantastic way to encourage creativity inside and outside school, in adults and children alike, and I am very pleased to give it my support.”