St. Aidan’s sees the Arts as a vehicle to engage with self-expression through opportunities in music, dance, drama, art, creative writing and design and cultural experiences. St. Aidan’s see the Arts as a means of preparing a child for the skills and attitudes required for contemporary life by exploring creativity and imagination, to develop confidence and self-esteem and to experience joy, beauty, and wonder. This creative process involves verbal and non-verbal communication.
Music is provided by a specialist teacher from Reception to Year 6. Art and Design are taught by class teachers and work is usually interwoven in the class curriculum. Drama is integrated into all subjects in lesson starters, main delivery of learning objectives and in plenaries. Every year, each year group has an opportunity to perform ‘on stage’ to a wider audience: children in Reception and Year 1 perform in a Nativity; Children in Year 2 and Year 3 in a mid-year production; Year 5 perform the Easter Passion Play; Year 6 an end of Year production. Dance is taught through the Val Sabin scheme and as part of the P.E. Curriculum. There is a wide range of after-school clubs offering diverse approaches to the Arts.
All pupils are timetabled to have access to and participate in the Arts regardless of level of Special Educational Need. Talent is nurtured through use of visiting specialists and opportunities for performance in key events and weekly assemblies. Student voice is enabled through ‘school council’ and through ‘open’ dialogue with staff. Children are awarded leadership opportunities in class i.e. ‘Art Monitor’ and other ‘backstage’ responsibilities to support school productions.
We aim to ensure children receive a rich curriculum by organising extra-curricular events such as school trips to the theatre and to a range of educational and interesting places, and by inviting visiting performers to the school. We collaborate with outside companies to develop our skills and display our creativity for others to enjoy in the wider community. Choirs have performed at the O2 and other Choral Festivals. We welcome theatre groups including Ten-Ten Theatre, Bigfoot Education and acclaimed artists including Brian Moses.