We are proud of our achievement in bringing Arts and Music into the heart of Norley School. We believe that experience of and participation in the arts play a vital part in the children’s development. We work with a range of professional artists, the community and our partner schools in our local Educational Improvement Partnership to develop the breadth and range of experiences across the arts. Our commitment has been recognised with the award of an Artsmark ‘Silver’ from the Arts Council.
Links with the community
Our Key Stage 2 children work in small groups for an afternoon a week with our own art teacher, Miss Coote. This provides an opportunity to develop skills and produce work to a high quality, often linked to partnership projects with the community. Examples have included: working on the Lady Mara Giant Head that was paraded through Chester in the Festival of Giants and displayed at the Garden Show; creating a large-scale junk model; crafting village scarecrows; and producing the tiles for the entrance to the Norley Village Hall.
Our partnership with the church is an integral part of the school. Children across the school take part in special services throughout the year and this provides an opportunity to share reflective readings, sing, play instruments and dramatise events. Being in church is a very special experience. The children also join with other schools to attend a bi-annual Carol Service.
The school makes music lessons available through the Music for Life organisation and via private tutors. Currently, children are learning to play a diverse range of instruments with woodwind, brass, keyboards and piano all represented. A highlight for children (and parents) is the opportunity to showcase their skills in December at the village Cancer Research Concert and at our annual summer concert. All the children in the school are given an Ocarina in class 2 which they learn to play together to practice the skills of ensemble playing. We also have a group of children in school who learn to play the bell plates which they have performed in church and at other concerts.
We add to the diversity of the children's arts experience by inviting many different artists and groups into school. This creates a wide and varied cultural experience and involves children directly in the arts. Examples have included producing large scale artwork for inclusion in the Cheshire School Art exhibition and creating a willow withy tunnel in the school grounds. We have also held special events linked to world book day, for example, a roll-your-sleeves-up-and-get-stuck-in poetry experience with the well-known local poet, David Horner. To enrich our Vikings topic, we welcomed local author, Rachel Lindsay, to the school. During 2014, we will be bringing in another local author and illustrator for Key Stage 1 and a cartoonist for Key Stage 2.
The major event, which brings together all the year’s experiences in arts and music and demonstrates the school’s inclusive and supportive ethos, is the annual Christmas production. Past productions have been rich and varied and have included those with a Christian theme. Every single pupil is directly involved in these productions with Year 6 children playing leading roles in narration and acting. This makes for unforgettable and enjoyable experiences for everyone with ‘standing room’ only performances in front of family and friends in the run up to Christmas. In 2013, we performed "A Tale of Two Nativities" which was thoroughly enjoyed by children, parents and staff.
Class 4 pupils, with a special emphasis on Year 6 children, also feature significantly in the summer concert. A recent highlight was our own 'Oscars Ceremony' and nominations for special awards. This included the production of an entertaining DVD featuring the stars of the day - and, who knows, maybe the stars of tomorrow!
Norley Church of England Primary School Headteacher: Mrs Helen Kelly Hough Lane, Norley, Cheshire, WA6 8JZ Tel: 01928 788471 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
"committed to educational excellence in a happy supportive environment"