Who we are
Since 1998, Foto8 has provided multiple platforms for photojournalism and documentary photography. Through its online and print publications, and its gallery premise from 2005-2012, the company has been at the forefront of innovative and inspiring photographic productions.
During 2012, co-founder Yasmin Keel and I delivered a pilot programme of 17 one-day workshops for primary schools at Foto8's gallery. We introducing the children and their teachers to photo stories and artists. Through exhibitions, projections, discussions and making their own pictures the sessions we held covered topics that reflected the class' curriculum.
After these sessions finished in November, and Foto8 closed its doors on its gallery, we sat down with those teachers and head teachers and designed a new schedule of classes to continue this innitiative. With their great approval and enthusisam we will now be able to continue the sessions in their schools whilst also building the programme to be replicated in classrooms across the country.
Amongst the many children growing up in London, a overwhelming majority have little access or experience of the huge arts and cultural scene our city has to offer.
The programme will introduce children to a photography-based activity learning that focuses on the curriculum class topics, thereby making the learning experience both fun, meaningful and accessible to children across a wide range of abilities and social backgrounds.
The programme itself is divided into three teaching modules:
- Looking at and interpreting a photographic body of work
- Learning class topics by applying visual and creative tools.
- Hands-on photography workshops (the super fun part): Exploring creative techniques and individual expressions.
PUBLICATION OF TEACHING RESOURCES
Towards the end of the first year we will publish a book of our class material, the stories and topics with the text and photography we have used in teaching classes. Included in the book will be photographs and stories made by the children who have completed our class sessions.
This will be our 2013 Yearbook and will be distributed to teachers across the country as a print on demand title, downloadable and accessible to all teachers wishing to use the material and replicate the methods we have established during the year.
Open Education Resources:
Whilste we are delivering classes to children in London, we will contribute to and maintain an online network of participating schoiols, artists and professionals.
Thanks to Foto8's large network of photographers and educators we look forward to making our courses available in areas all across the UK and in other partner countries.
Thanks to digital dissemination online we will share materials and provide class structures so that teachers and children can enjoy the creative learning experience and techniques that we want to give them.
In 2013 we will continue to work with established partner organisations such as the established advocacy and photography charity, PhotoVoice, and the innovative and exciting Brooklyn Photo organisation UPI.
These respected organisations will provide monitoring, evaluation, exhibition and publishing expertise to our programme helping us to create Open Education Resources with our classwork material and network of educators.
What we need:
We seeking to raise £12,000 in funding ourselves to begin our programme and start teaching in the Summer term in April. Our self-funding budget will go towards the start-up and running costs of producing class materials, teaching sessions and conducting fieldtrips with artists.
The money we are able to raise also permits us to apply for and request match funding from education and arts funding organisations, who we are in contact with, so that we can develop and continue the programme through the winter and spring terms up until March 2014.A full school year.
Over this year period we will reach over 2000 children through 80 classroom and artist sessions. An equivalent cost for each child's participation in our programme is just £13.63 per head!
Olympus Cameras have kindly priovided cameras and other organisations are talking to us offering knowledge and support.
Included in this project costs that we seek funding for on Indiegogo are the necessary finances for day trips to exhibitions and being able to invite a visiting artist to meet and present their work to each class.
Who benefits and why it is important:
The schools we have targeted to launch this programme are in three London boroughs: Hackney (St John and St James Primary School), Islington (Newington Green Primary School & St John Highbury Vale) and Tower Hamlets (Harry Gosling Primary School). These schools are in the 5% of the most deprived boroughs in England (Indices of Deprivation 2010).
The majority of the children who will benefit from our programme have limited or no access to art and photography outside their classroom and come from a wide range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
Classes in Years 4, 5 and 6 in each school will each enjoy four sessions of our programme, including participating in a creative workshop to make their own images and make their own personal photo stories.
- To reach schools in London's most socially and economically deprived areas and introduce or develop their knowledge of the city's accessible arts and cultural experiences.
- Introduce children to photography and provide a foundation for interpreting and using visual language and the arts for themselves, whilst using photography as a tool to explore and learnt their curriculum topics.
- To build each child's self-confidence, trust in their abilities and articulate what they see and feel around them.
- To give teachers with whom we have worked a broader set of resources and methods to include the arts in their classroom teaching as well as new tools and materials with which they can continue to use our methods.
- To provide the open materials and findings from this programme to an accessible 'Look and Learn' network that can be accessed by teachers and artists.
- To work with photographers in London and across the country to train and engage them in classroom teaching so that their skills and experiences can be passed on and valued by the next generation of school children across all areas of subject interests: Science, English, Mathematics and the Arts.
- To compliment the national curriculum by bringing the arts into a broad spectrum of subjects including science, history, geography, politics and creative writing.
We are determined to see this project happen, but we need your help to do so! We are calling on all photography aficionados, Foto8 supporters - both the new and the die-hards, parents with children at Primary Schools, educators and academics who understand the value of creative learning, and everyone who can to show us their support to help us give the next generation of photographers and art appreciators, a fun, creative method of teaching and achieving their education.
Please share and promote this campaign. We are ever so grateful for any contribution, great or small, that you can make towards us achieving these goals.
With Many Thanks,
Jon and Yasmin