Arbourthorne Community Primary School

Arbourthorne Community Primary School

'... a place of joy, inclusivity and learning' OfSTED 2022

Other projects

April 2021

Cool 2 Be Clever - Sustainable Architecture

Cool 2 Be Clever was a little bit different this year, as it was delivered remotely from Arbourthorne. We focussed on sustainable architecture, and  were lucky enough to be joined by our Student Ambassadors, Segan Okunrinboye  and Alison Romaine who are studying architecture, engineering and landscape design at the University to Sheffield. A big thankyou to both of them for sharing their skills, knowledge and student experiences with the children.

In the first session, we looked at the paintings and architecture of  the Austrian artist Hundertwasser to help us design a roof garden for our school. Hundertwasser loved bright colours, pattern, curves and organic forms - he was dead against straight lines! He was ahead of his time in terms of his ecological thinking, and incorporated plants, trees and 'spontaneous vegetation', into his buildings,  to help reduce pollution and provide habitats for wildlife.  Influenced by this, the children made a birds eye view drawing of their roof garden, marking out lots of different features that would be beneficial to the environment. 

In the second session we focussed on building just one feature from the garden as a 3 dimensional model. We learned different skills for attaching cardboard and applied them to our designs. There will be a prize awarded at the Cool 2 Be Clever graduation for the best roof garden design, so watch this space! In the meantime, here are some images of What Team Arbourthorne got up to...

September 2020, Festival of the Mind

A group of our Key stage 2 families are taking part in this city wide festival, in collaboration with the University of Sheffield. Festival of the Mind is an on line sharing platform, that  aims to celebrate  and showcase all types of play and creativity . As part of the festival, Adventures in Sustainable Play is a home learning project which uses Flipgrid as a digital portal for children to share a their adventures. Each family has received a maker kit with various bits and pieces like battery packs, LED lights and motors so they can create characters, creatures or props that move, spin, wobble or light up! Guidance on how to use these tools is provided by short instructional videos from Alison Buxton of the University of Sheffield and are accessed through flipgrid. In addition,the sharing facility this app offers encourages our children to develop their oracy  and presentation skills. This is the beginning of Arbourthorne's Maker journey - it will be fun!

March 2020

Thankyou to Cool 2 B Clever kids for a great day on Wednesday - you produced some fantastic artwork inspired by Grayson Perry's 'Comfort Blanket' tapestry, which is on permanent display at the Graves Art Gallery in Sheffield. The colourful tapestry is over 8 metres wide and contains words and sayings that represent the artists' ideas about contemporary British culture. In our workshop today we explored different ways of text making and produced beautiful designs for our own 'C2BC' tapestries, which will go on display when the children graduate at a special ceremony in July. 

July 2019

I am currently working with Miss Ellison in Y4 investigating how visual art can improve literacy, as part of the Power of Reading. The children are reading a brilliant book called Lob, by Linda Newbery, about a little girl called Lucy who  helps her grandfather on his allotment. Granddad tells Lucy all about Lob, a mysterious, unseen character who also helps granddad,  but we're not really sure if Lob is real, or just lives in granddad's and Lucy's imagination. The children have been making artwork in response to the text, with a focus on enriching language as part of the making process. I highly recommend this book, and can't wait to find out more about Lob and Lucy in next weeks lesson!

May 2019

Another FAB Cool To Be Clever Art Day with our new Year 5 pupils, here we are playing Surrealist drawing games...  

March 2019

Cool To Be Clever Kids came to Arbourthorne today for a creative experience based on the exhibition Leonardo Da Vinci: A Life In Drawing. We looked carefully at Leonardo's drawings of flowing water, and copied some of his techniques using pen and ink. In the afternoon we made colourful mixed media artworks inspired by The Vehicle of Nature, by Universal Everything, which is a fantastic installation and part of the Leonardo experience at the Millennium Gallery in Sheffield. Go along and see it - it's free and on until May 2019.

December 2018

The fun continues... creating opportunities for writing through making and role play. Our Y3 and Y4 boys have been devising stories through comic scripts and making passports for entrance into their castle. Using wire, tape and cardboard packaging they create all kinds of gadgets and high tech weaponry. Check out the hand cuffs and beware!

November 2018

Twelve boys from years 3 and 4 are creating characters for a new writing project that will run between now and Christmas. We have been looking at the use of shapes when creating characters, how to draw facial expressions, building fortresses and creating Fact File booklets for each character. Through a rich variety of making and visual investigation, the children will explore mapmaking, book making and storytelling  as their characters develop and embark on their adventures.

May 2018

Year 1 invited me on their trip to the Millenium and Graves Art Galleries in Sheffield. It was the first time some of us had been in an art gallery, and the children had lots of great questions about the things they saw. We also went to the Winter Gardens to make observational drawings of the plant life there. We carefully recorded all the different shapes of the flowers and leaves we found.

February 2018

Foundation children came to Artspace to be let loose on large sheets of paper taped to the floor. The furniture was moved out the way to encourage children to lie down on their bellies whilst they worked. They each were given a chunky graphite stick and told they could use the paper as they wished. The children talked constantly whilst markmaking, telling detailed stories about what was happening in their drawings. Eventually,with some modelling from me, they all tuned in to drawing big, repetitive circles; great for developing gross motor skills. 

Spring 2018 


Pupils in Year 5 are taking part in an exciting collaboration with Watercliffe Meadow school. In Turning 10 we have used P4C, (philosophy for children) film and photography to explore issues around identity and our place in the world, both now and in the future. The children chose six objects to represent different aspects of their lives; place, family ,experiences, daily life, hobbies, interests and food.These images show the children giving great thought to arranging their objects to create photographic 'object portraits', raising questions about what assumptions we make about other people, and what can we learn about a person through studying objects? 

Spring 2017

Foundation children are working with Jayne in Artspace developing their gross motor skills through making large scale collaborative paintings. The paper has been taped to the wall a bit too high deliberately, so that the children have to stretch to make marks, and therefore develop muscles in their upper arms and shoulders. As you can see, quite a bit of paint went on the actual wall, so we may have to do a bit of decorating at the end of the project! Maybe the children could do that too.... 

 Arbourthorne’s gifted and talented artists have been meeting each week with Jayne to explore Still Life painting.  A Still Life is a work of art that depicts inanimate subject matter (that means stuff that doesn’t move; like bottles, pots, fruit and flowers.)    Jayne and the children were invited up to Sheffield High School for the day ,where they worked collaboratively ( as a team) to create a magnificent Still Life painting using shades of core value colours, inspired by the work of famous artists, Patrick Caulfield and Michael Craig-Martin. You can see the final result on display outside the Community Room.