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Dream like

Sunday, July 9th, 2017


Photo credit: Graeme Braidwood

The course of true love never did run smooth and neither did doing a Shakespeare play with 240 twelve and thirteen year olds, however last week was a lot less tempestuous than it could have been. Continue reading “Dream like” »

Shakespeare Recipe

Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

Here’s the recipe.

Take William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and a filleting knife. Cut away any material that can be possibly regarded as fat, leaving a lean narrative, anything remotely repetitive should be cut out and thrown away, retain a hint of poetry for the purposes of flavour. Continue reading “Shakespeare Recipe” »

Beginnings and Endings

Monday, June 26th, 2017

At the beginning of the year a small group of Year 6 children from Billesley Primary School joined us at our base in AE Harris to begin work on an online choose your own adventure story. We used the journey from their school to the Jewellery Quarter as inspiration for possible starting points, settings and characters for their stories. As I walked with them I realised that this was their last year in primary school and that they were one of the first groups of children we had worked with in our now five year long partnership with Billesley Primary.

I first met them when they were in Year Two and aged 6. Together we made a comic book version of Treasure Island and looking back at the pictures from that project you can see their personalities shining through. The following year they worked with us on a Weather Project documenting the daily conditions, writing poetry and creating costumes for a meteorological themed performance in the school hall. In Year Four we explored Ancient China with them. Last summer when they were in Year 5 we made Superfast Shakespeare, a quick fire rendering of five Shakespeare Plays performed outdoors in their playground and on the terrace of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford.

 
Now they are in Year 6 and a group of ten of these now 11 year olds have just finished creating The Amazing Adventures Of You. They wrote stories and learnt coding to create a hypertext adventure in which you, the reader can choose which path you want to choose through the story.

We wish these children and the rest of Year 6 at Billesley the very best for their future adventures and thank them for their work with us over the years.

 
Please read and enjoy the amazing adventure they have created for you HERE

Craig

Brookfields’ Primary Poets

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

We’ve just had clearance to share a new web-page with you. It documents our winter adventures with years 3 and 4 at Brookfields Primary School. Together we explored their local area taking photographs, we wrote lots of poems inspired by these photographs, created a newspaper with selection of these poems and performed a selection of this selection for parents in the school hall. It was great fun, the photographs and poems are lovely as you can see if you explore the page and the digital copy of the newspaper embedded above.

What a treat to work with such lovely young people and their great teachers.

Creative Learning Recruitment

Thursday, January 19th, 2017

the tempest

We are recruiting one or two part time freelance Creative Learning Associate/s to lead an after school Drama Club and work as an Assistant Director on a new school production.

We require an enthusiastic and imaginative person to lead a new after-school Drama Club which will take place twice a week in two different secondary schools within the Ward End area of East Birmingham. The clubs will culminate in the staging of three productions.

Following a production of The Tempest last year we are also staging a large-scale adapted version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at one of the schools and so are also seeking an Assistant Director to work with the Artistic and Associate Director to deliver this exciting and ambitious project.

The posts could be offered to the same person, or to two different individuals.
The after-school Drama Club begins the w/c 27th February 2017 and ends at Easter 2018. Rehearsals for A Midsummer Night’s Dream will run from mid- June to mid-July.

Please click here for further details of the posts and how to apply. As part of your application please also complete our Equal Opportunities monitoring form.

Should you have any further questions please contact our Creative Learning Producer Lucy Nicholls lucy@stanscafe.co.uk. Applications close on Tuesday 31st January.

School’s out (& nearly back).

Monday, August 29th, 2016

saltley-tempest-large

Here’s an interesting thing: Saltley Academy students have got their best GCSE results in years and the Headteacher sent us a kind email thanking us for our contribution to this improvement. The thing is we have been working in the school on and off for two years and never directly worked with any of the students whose results have just come through, so why the thanks? How do we muscle in on any glory? Continue reading “School’s out (& nearly back).” »

Junior Commentators

Friday, August 12th, 2016

commentator_apprenctices

On Saturday a team of apprentice commentators from the Lyng Media Club take to the streets of West Bromwich as part of the Sandwell Arts Festival. A team of twelve young people aged between 5 and 12 will be on the streets between 12:00 – 15:00 reporting on all the goings on in the town centre during festival time.
Continue reading “Junior Commentators” »

CETT Puppets

Friday, March 11th, 2016

cylinderheadsCETT

What greater privilege can there be that helping to teach the teachers?

On Wednesday I teamed up with Jim “Art Games” Morris for our final engagement with this year’s cohort of trainees from Central England Teacher Training. Their course started back in early September with A City Adventure and we met up again in November to put some creative thinking in around their placements in school. Continue reading “CETT Puppets” »

Mayor Meets the Mayor

Thursday, February 4th, 2016

Trailblazers

So everything that I said in yesterday’s post would happen has happened. The council house was overrun by teenagers. They all looked very smart in their school uniforms and those whose schools didn’t have uniforms still looked smart. It was a fantastic mix of young people from across the city and although, predictably, things were a little tentative initially people soon started warming up. Continue reading “Mayor Meets the Mayor” »

Trailblazers: In A Visible City

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016

traiblazers-for-blog
Photo: Kate Green

So the Trailblazers’ map has been published and today it will be presented by 2030’s Executive Mayor of Birmingham to the current incumbent The Right Worshipful, The Lord Mayor, Councillor Raymond Hassall. Continue reading “Trailblazers: In A Visible City” »


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