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Aston, H., TASC, , 2016.

St Mary's Primary School, Phase 2

Output Type:Artefact
Venue:St Mary's Primary School, Moss Side Manchester

Working with TASC (the Architecture School for Children) our aim was to work with communities to create inclusive and engaging places of play, to explore the everyday in-between spaces of the city where children, teachers and families can work together with creative collaborators and gain an understanding of the built and natural environment. We believe the city is an important resource in the children's process of learning and as a context with which they can engage through their own creativity and those of others, and become creatively involved in the 'story' of the places and things they are exploring. It enables children develop a sense of connectedness and in doing so creates opportunities for a sense of happiness and well-being. Such engagement develops important skills: o World Making, World Building; through play, children imagine worlds that don't exist and play out scenarios, which helps develop a sense of empathy and interconnectivity. o The freedom to make discoveries for themselves and to develop the skills with which to communicate their findings. o Creative problem solving - methodology teaches children to think o Connectivity to the real world o Visualize things - curiosity of the world o Working together, participating in a democratic process By being involved in creative project work based on this philosophy, children are encouraged to make connections between the subjects they study in the National Curriculum. Through understanding their learning in this way they also understand that the creation and sustainability of the city and the urban life it contains is also rooted in such connectivity. I worked with worked with TASC to re-design and construct areas of the playground around the school into places that will inspire children's creative learning through their play. o Project workshops include mapping, spatial visualization, analysis and exploration of the site and/or local area, engaging the local community and children in creative, playful workshops; giving them an active say in the planned change of their environment o Development of ideas, drawing, model making, painting, animation, film, design, music o Exploring different materials, use of recycled materials o Exploring ecological solutions to site specific problems o Workshops in planting and growing food o Visits to inspiring places, o Workshops at MSA, working with students and architects o Outreach workshops within and around the school and the wider community e.g.: explore under used, neglected spaces or hidden places to work in. o Community engagement, to run a series of community 'pop up' shelter making events in identified spaces.