Welcome to the website of Susan M. Coles, Artist & Arts, Creativity & Educational Consultant.

Posted in Good News Bits

I want to start this blog by directing you to this letter, sent to Michael Gove by artist Bob and Roberta Smith:
Letter to Michael Gove
It’s a stunning and powerful letter and will be admired by all of those who value the Arts and visual art and design in the school curriculum, plus the opportunities to study these subjects at 16+.

I have asked Bob to support my “Rainbow for Mr Gove “ project which will be part of the 2011 BIG DRAW in October and ask you all to “watch this space”.

This has been the year for advocacy for the Arts and it has been a pleasure to be part of this, also it’s been a frustration when it seems that the offices of the DFE don’t have the listening ear that they claim to have. I have met some great champions for the subject and am proud to be part of a movement which refuses to be silenced. The work of NSEAD in supporting teacher educators has been important this year, long may this continue.

Last week saw days 3 and 4 of the BIG DRAW/Campaign for Drawing Drawing Action Associates training workshops. Well, what noble company I am amongst for this.
Drawing Action Associates

Big Draw newsletter

An eclectic group of passionate artists and educators, who have the common focus of making the Campaign for Drawing meaningful across the regions, and who are full of inventive ideas and exciting thoughts for CPD which will support everyone in the Big Draw or in just enhancing the lives and experiences of others through the simple power of drawing (in whatever form that might take). Our mentor is Eileen Adams and if you have not had the pleasure of hearing Eileen speak, try this link:
Eileen Adams talks about drawing

The image that is at the top of the blog is a three minute sketch by a group of 10 ! We called it “the Somme”.

Baltic Buddies a few weeks ago was a roaring success and another impressive event for the Baltic education team. We had an intriguing mixed audience of teachers from all subject areas, who took part in a lively inset session where they used the Turner Prize nominees as a focus for creating cross curricular schemes of work. I loved watching the creativity and hearing the divergent ideas emerging from the groups. It was so good to see the Art teacher and the Maths teacher and the Dance teacher all working together and discovering new and important links. Feedback at the end of the session was positive and affirming. Turner Prize, Baltic style, is going to be phenomenal.

Now, lots of people know that I run a number of courses nationally for both Lighthouse and Keynote. I love doing these courses and always invite people to feedback to me if they have gone back to school and made any changes as a result of the inset. In June, I ran a course which looks at the underachievement of boys in art and design. One of the areas we look at, and discuss, is drawing and mark making and how this can be made exciting by introducing open ended approaches. We also talked about how “homework” should challenge and offer students opportunities to do something very different to classroom based work. One of my delegates, Fiona Buchanan, went back to school (Glenthorne High School) and set a task for year nine students which follows “For this homework you will need to use your imagination and creativity to come up with a new way to create art work which responds to movement.” One of Fiona’s students, James, produced this response, recorded it and uploaded it to the internet:
Responding to Movement using eggs
A superbly creative response, well done James and to all the other students who produced unique ways of meeting the challenge.

I also got my official accreditation from the National College as a coach for their programmes. This was after appearing before a panel who asked me many questions and also used evidence from the trainee headteachers that I have worked with. A good end to the year.



3957 days ago

cool stuff.


3953 days ago

The egg throw art is amazing. Clever idea.

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