Grasshoppers Weekly Art
Where: Grasshoppers in the Park
When: rolling, weekly programme
Topic: Art / Art history
Year group: early years ages 2-5
See the project’s Micro-Website
Weekly Art Sessions
When our children (aged 3) began attending Grasshoppers in the Park community nursery back in 2011, we as parents offered our services as artists. Grasshoppers invites parents to input toward the running of the nursery in exchange for a discount on childcare fees. We volunteered our time to run a weekly art class for the children.
The premise for the art sessions was to introduce the children to some of the great artists in history world wide. Their learning would be contextualised through the work of a particular artist or movement. So for example, if the children are looking at shapes, lets say squares and rectangles we could show them Mondrian’s paintings. The children would then make a collage using these shapes and black strips pre-cut from coloured paper …
It soon became clear that introducing the children to a celebrated artist followed by making a piece of art inspired by their style of work was a winning formula.
“It’s amazing how children take to things which we think are difficult or exclusively for adults” Luciana Talpo, Grasshoppers Manager.
When our children were old enough to move on to school, Grasshoppers asked if we would continue our weekly sessions. Six years later we are still there enjoying the creative energy that the children bring.
How do our sessions work?
Each term we start with a new theme from ‘surrealism’ to ‘the park’. Weekly sessions start with the inspiration of a playful anecdote and visual references and end by gathering in a circle to talk about the work created. There are no ready made templates to decorate or colour in, the aim is for each child to produce something different based on their own ideas and imagination. The sessions are fun, messy and occasionally chaotic but voices are heard and incredible original artworks are made.
Stats about this project
- Drawing 30% 30%
- Painting 25% 25%
- Printing 25% 25%
- Mixed Media 15% 15%
- 3D modelling 5% 5%
Applied art techniques
Number of participants
The Big Draw these for 2019 was Drawn to Life. Art Hoppers in partnership with Rich Mix, City & Hackney Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services and local families discuss art and well-being via two community events for The Big Draw festival 2019. A community artwork is up on permanent display in Dalston CLR James Library in Hackney as a result of the project.