Splash as urban art colours curriculum

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Children at a Blackpool school have been inspired by the bold and bright world of urban art.

Pupils who attend Thames Primary Academy on Severn Road will be greeted each day by all the colours of the rainbow in a cheerful mural painted on the wall of their school.

Youngsters from Thames Primary Academy perform a dance to celebrate new artwork on the wall of their school by artist Rachel 'Jeffrie' Jackson

Youngsters from Thames Primary Academy perform a dance to celebrate new artwork on the wall of their school by artist Rachel 'Jeffrie' Jackson

The painting, which shows children building sandcastles on the beach and riding on a rollercoaster, was created by Blackpool-born artist Rachel Jeffrie Jackson.

Thames Academy teacher Andrea Davidson said: “All the words in the painting say something about our school.

“We were doing a topic about urban pioneers and we started off looking at artwork around Blackpool town centre, and we looked at it in classes and took photos.

“We looked at the changes that had happened in Blackpool and compared it to what Blackpool used to be like.

Youngsters from Thames Primary Academy perform a dance to celebrate new artwork on the wall of their school by artist Rachel 'Jeffrie' Jackson

Youngsters from Thames Primary Academy perform a dance to celebrate new artwork on the wall of their school by artist Rachel 'Jeffrie' Jackson

“We got Rachel in to talk about urban art. We did different activities, making dream catchers and kites.

“Our mission statement is ‘let your potential soar’ so we focused on things that could fly, like birds and kites.”

The school’s slogan also appears on the mural, along with the words ‘effective’, ‘supportive’, ‘encouraging’ and ‘imaginative’.

Rachel, who now lives in Smethwick, Birmingham, designed the painting with the help of Thames Academy pupils.

She said: “I put sheets of paper on the floor and got them to draw what Blackpool meant to them and they all drew things like sandcastles and the Big One from the Pleasure Beach. One person drew a unicorn so I put a unicorn in there.

“I worked during school time and on lunch breaks they would come over and ask me questions.”

The wall painting took four days to complete, and was unveiled to parents on Wednesday as children celebrated by performing a dance they had learned.

Rachel said: “It was absolutely brilliant. The kids love it.”

Andrea said: “It has really inspired the children to think about being creative.”