At Webster we a have unique entitlement to learning across The Arts, built on a special relationship with Manchester Camerata, one of Europe’s leading Chamber Orchestras, and the work of visiting instrumental tutors and Artists in Education. We were awarded the Artsmark Platinum Award in March 2017 with reaccreditation in October 2021, this is a huge achievement for our school and recognises our focus on the arts as well as the contribution of all staff, pupils and visiting practitioners involved in our journey so far! We had this feedback from Artsmark:
'The panel commended your school's high ambitions for arts and culture and the strength of the partnerships you have developed. Your relationship with Camerata Music was highlighted and the panel look forward to seeing how you extend this ambassador model across other art forms. Your school has been awarded Artsmark Platinum. Congratulations! Amanda Rigler, Senior Officer, Artsmark, Arts Council England, March 2017.
'Webster Primary's longstanding commitment to the Arts is reflected in its most recent phase of Artsmark work. During this period your school has re-evaluated its strategy documents and reaffirmed its strong commitment to arts rich education through fresh governor and senior leadership endorsement. You have also grown the skills and capacities of learner arts champions through your Arts Ambassador scheme. This has meant that in every class ambassadors are given job descriptions, training and badges. They develop belonging amongst pupils through contribution to curriculum review, promoting their own Art & Design competitions, participation in CPD, collection of evidence for portfolios, participation in MCEP consultation, hosting of governors’ events and sessions for international visitors. You are an outward facing school and work energetically with arts organisations and other schools to build strong arts practices. Examples include Manchester Camerata, Artist in Education David Hulston, Z-Arts, Music Tutors, The Slow Show, TASC, Manchester Music Service and a range of other authentic individual industry professionals. New collaboration with the science departments at the University of Manchester which resulted in inspiring weekly Bio-Art Club - authentic art outcomes with scientific themes. New sponsorship supported partnership with Computer Xplorers and provision of authentic digital creative opportunities including a new Videomaker club. You also provided arts-based well-being activities for your school partnership’s annual training day. Visits from Swedish and Danish educators keen to learn about your approaches to the Curriculum speak to your position as an influencer in arts education. The quality of your provision and the strength of your partnerships is very well-established.' Artsmark Assessors, Arts Council England, 1st October 2021.
The Arts ambassadors are very enthusiastic about Art and Music- they are very knowledgeable about art and music at our school. They produce termly newsletters, represent the school at arts events and run fantastic competitions!
Art & Design
We have bespoke art and design schemes linked to our topic planning which have been trialled and improved over a number of years. They build on the skills and inputs of visiting Artists in Education David Hulston, Joe Ford and Sally Gilford who collaborate with pupils and teachers on a regular basis. They provide skills and experience such as cyanotype prints, handmade books, printmaking and mummified crocodiles to enhance learning opportunities, and support teachers with lesson planning. Class teachers then deliver regularly taught art and design lessons using a range of media and both 2 and 3D experiences which are enhanced by half day workshops from the visiting artists. In this way we can ensure a fantastic breadth of experience and a clear progression of skills. We have a wide range of after school clubs available linked to the arts- many of them led by practitioners from Z-Arts in Hulme.
Two of our Year 6 pupils won the National Holocaust Centre's national art competition in July 2015. Year 6's Horrors Of War project was featured on BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour programme (November 2013). We have a very close working relationship with Manchester Metropolitan University and exhibit artwork annually in the MMU Birley Fields Art Gallery.
On a rolling programme each class experiences a half term of class based music followed by a half term of guitar or drum/percussion tuition. Class based music is planned in collaboration with musicians from Manchester Camerata Chamber Orchestra, with a similar curriculum construction as we have developed in Art & Design. Teachers deliver a progressive series of music lessons, then Camerata musicians will deliver additional workshops alongside the class teachers.
We also run three longer performance projects with Camerata each year. These incorporate the work of visiting dramatists as well as musicians and composers; each project lasting 3-5 days and culminating in a performance. In recent years these have linked with topics such as Active Planet, Victorian Manchester or Portrait of Place as well as our longest running Year 6 project-The Horrors of War.
Classes are split into groups of no more than 15 for guitar and percussion tuition, these being delivered by guitar tutor Rob Goodwin and drum/percussion tutor Chris Hough. These experiences are hugely popular with our children. We view them as an entitlement; we believe that every child should have these opportunities, so we make no charge. Guitar is delivered to KS2 pupils while percussion extends into KS1 and EYFS.
We also have a Gifted & Talented programme for both drumming and guitar which provides additional opportunities for individuals and groups. We have recently developed a school Rock Band whose members are developing their performance and songwriting skills. Our pupils can also study for and achieve RockSchool qualifications in drums or guitar.
Secrets of the Viking Sword (Year 5) November 2018
Music Showcase December 2017
Reception Drumming Showcase 2017
Year 5 Vikings 2017
Year 6 Horrors of War 2017
Year 4 Portraits of Place 2017
December 2016 Music Showcase
Horrors of War Project 2016
RockSchool Drumming Grade 1
Performances & Projects
Our longer projects with Manchester Camerata often lead to performances at the Royal Northern College of Music, for example, The Horrors of War (Smugglers) mini opera and Portraits of Place.
Click the following links to see some of these performances: