Arts Blog – January

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Welcome to our Arts Blog, where we try to keep everyone up to date with the arts at SSMJ. We are very lucky to have lots of arts expertise and enthusiasm amongst our staff, from drama specialists to musicians, singers, visual artists, skilled crafters and creative bakers. It’s been great to welcome artist- teacher Sarah O’Flanagan to our Meadow Lane site. She is a visual artist as well as a foundation year teacher and we look forward to heaps of creativity from our youngest children under her guidance. It will also be great for foundation stage children to see the work of our other key stages, as they move around the school. I have already fielded lots of questions from year R and year 1 children about our year 5 Tudor-inspired fashion designs which are currently on display outside Silver Birch and Hazel classes.

Year 4 have started their Anglo-Saxon topic this term – studying Beowulf in English and Drama and creating Anglo-Saxon patterns and illuminated letters in Art. They are also starting to think about their production of Treasure Island, part of next term’s emphasis on drama, music and costume design.

We are trying to strengthen and develop our creative links at SSMJ (one of our Artsmark aims). We were really happy with the fabulous street art and mural project in the summer and this term, look forward to a map project with the Bodleian Library which runs alongside year five’s art lessons. Year 5 will be drawing and painting fantasy maps (inspired by their class novel Floodland). They have also been collaborating on a music project with Magdalen college students, an interesting and enriching learning experience for everyone involved!

Our school choir and contemporary dance sessions are underway at lunchtimes. Activity clubs (after school) this term include Bollywood dance, craft club, watercolour painting and recorders.

This term sees the first meeting of our Junior Arts Council. Ms Blackwell and I will bring a group of children together to express their views, hopes and ideas regarding the arts at SSMJ. One of our Artsmark goals is to give our children more say in our arts offering, so we look forward to hearing their thoughts and suggestions.

Our next arts blog will be at the beginning of next term. In the meantime, we are all looking forward to a brilliantly creative start to 2024!

Ali Moreton,
Sarah Blackwell
and the arts team.