An Olympic Year

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An Olympic Year

Filed under: 2012 entries
School: Shawhead Primary School
Location: Shawhead, Dumfries and Galloway
Artist: Karen Little
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Our mosaic was designed and created by all the children at Shawhead School and their art teacher. Shawhead School is a very small rural school with only 16 pupils (At the time of making the mosaic), so everyone, from P1 to P7 had to help out! The children discussed Olympic sports with their Art Teacher, Mrs Bielinski. They then chose sports from this list that they had taken part in at school. We were keen to make sure that the date was included in the design as this year is our little school’s 150th Birthday! In fact, this is the reason we applied for the mosaic kit, as the children had created designs for a commemorative mosaic that was then professionally made for the school. We wanted the children to have a go at mosaic making themselves. When the children saw the beautiful tiles, they couldn’t wait to get their hands on them and get started.

The children then worked in pairs to design a sporting figure. We used a photocopier to resize the figures to fit our background. The background represents the landscape around the school, we are lucky enough to be surrounded by farmland, hills and have a reservoir just up the road! The children and Mrs Bielinski worked together on the final layout, moving the figures about on the background until everyone was happy with the design.

Then the tile placing began. The children worked in groups; taking turns to prepare the tiles, to glue and to place the tiles, and over about a week, managed to cover the majority of the design. There was a lull in the production of the mosaic as the summer holidays beat us to the finishing line! We began work again after the holidays. (We were keen to have the mosaic finished for our big birthday celebrations on 15th September, a very tight deadline!) As we had such young children working on the mosaic, we asked parents to come and help with the cutting of tiles and the placement of these tiles. Adults also helped with moving and gluing the mosaic on to its board.

The senior pupils then took on the job of grouting the mosaic as this needed to be done quickly.

Our mosaic is now complete and we are just waiting for expert help to mount it on a wall in the dining room. We feel that such a healthy and active design will help to promote our healthy school message.

We are delighted with the mosaic as it not only represents such a fantastic Olympic year, but also will be a lasting reminder of our 150th birthday. The high quality resources we were lucky enough to have been awarded have certainly helped us to create a fabulous mosaic that we are all really proud of. Thank you for the opportunity to take part in such a satisfying activity.

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