Sunday, 5 July 2015

Seven Stories: St. Bede's School #4 Bookmaking

A stack of books and collagraph plates

Another instalment in my series of posts about Prism Arts/Cumbria Library service Seven Stories project...

Working into our book pages

Working into our book pages

Working into our book pages

Having finished all the flags for our installation I wanted to spend my last session with the class working on something they could take home. Throughout the project they've been asking if they can keep the work we've done even though they're excited about it going into the library so for a while I'd been thinking about what we could do. As we have been working on this project the children have generated a lot of supporting material, such as designs, collages and practice prints. So, I thought that making a book would be a good way of collecting all the work they've done together and giving them something they can take home and show to their family and friends. As the project is a collaboration with the library and the classes starting point was a 700 year old book in Carlisle Library there is also a nice link there too.

Taking rubbings from a collagraph plate

Working into a rubbing

Working into our book pages

As I'd hoped the session provided a good opportunity to look back over all the things we'd tried over the project and it was great to hear what they'd enjoyed and what they'd found difficult. Unfortunately the class teacher was off work but in a way this was good as it gave the pupils the opportunity to tell a different member of staff what they'd done and how. I think they were quite surprised with how much work they's actually done! As well as the collagraph prints we had collages, designs, felt samples and stencilled prints.

A medium sized dragon

A selection of pages

During the day I encouraged the pupils to work back into their pages, particularly the collagraph prints. We used pastels, watercolour pencils and coloured pencils to add colour to the prints and did some rubbings from the collagraph plates as well. Some of the pupils even made extra pages, developing the designs and ideas we'd worked on previously. I also asked them to write a little bit about the pages, what they did, how and why. Some of the pupils really got into this side of things and others not so much! Some of the books even feature glossaries, contents pages and acknowledgements. I find it very rewarding when I take an idea in and the students really run with it, developing and expanding on it.

A finished book

Finished books

A collaged page

For the construction of the books I wanted to keep it simple because I was working with the whole class so I hole-punched all the pages and got the students to choose a ribbon to thread the pages together with. By the end of the day everyone had a finished book; a record of what they'd learnt and something to show to others. I think they were pleased as they kept asking to take them home, I said they had to wait until the end of term!

Book pages

A finished book

A design page with  written explanation

I've really enjoyed working with this class and I will miss my Wednesday's with them. I was really touched as throughout the day the students kept bringing me little drawings they's done for me. Because the project is a long running one we've been able to get to know each other well and developed good relationships, this has allowed the pupils to improve not only their practical skills but their self belief as well. I've seen their skills and confidence grow and it is a really satisfying thing to know that I've been part of that. It will be great to see the work up in the library in November. Which reminds me, I had better finishing sewing all the flags together...

Page with felt sample...

...and description

No comments:

Post a Comment