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Big Art for Little Artists: beside the seaside

Key facts

  • Suitable for: Key Stage 1
  • Subjects: Art and design, English
  • Session type: Gallery led
  • Duration: 60 minutes
  • Class size (maximum): 30
  • Venue: Walker Art Gallery


Our Big Art: beside the seaside session is an introduction to the Walker Art Gallery and a range of artworks with the themes of water and the seaside. Your group will take part in a series of drawing activities, class discussions and create their own art work, before spending the second part of the session our dedicated children’s gallery.

Further details

parent and child at a creative workshop

Big Art: beside the seaside is led by a member of our education team. Starting in the main gallery the group will be given a warm welcome and introduction to the Walker Art Gallery.

The workshop leader will then introduce a range of artworks with the themes of water and the seaside to the class. They will guide and encourage the pupils to interpret the artworks for themselves through a series of drawing activities and class discussions. This will compromise of a short series of ‘warm up’ exercises both as individuals and in groups. Following on from this each pupil will make an individual artwork which can be added to their sketchbooks back in school. Through these structured activities, the pupils will learn more about the role of an artist and the purpose of art. They are encouraged to develop their critical thinking and creative responses by saying what they see, feel and think about the paintings chosen.

The second part of the session is based in Big Art for Little Artists, our dedicated children’s gallery. Here they can further explore the seaside theme through self directed exploration of costumes, a themed collage activity and story books. To close the session leader will draw the attention of the pupils to a seaside themed display and lead a group reflection of their learning during the session.

Curriculum links 

Art & Design

  • record from first-hand observation, experience and imagination, and explore ideas
  • ask and answer questions about the starting points for their work, and develop their ideas
  • investigate the possibilities of a range of materials and processes
  • try out tools and techniques and apply these to materials and processes, including drawing
  • represent observations, ideas and feelings, and design and make images and artefacts
  • review what they and others have done and say what they think and feel about it
  • Visual and tactile elements, including colour, pattern and texture, line and tone, shape, form and space
  • materials and processes used in making art, craft and design
  • differences and similarities in the work of artists, craftspeople and designers in different times and cultures
  • working on their own, and collaborating with others, on projects in two and three dimensions on different scales
  • investigating different kinds of art, craft and design [for example during visits to galleries]
  • Use drawing to develop and share their ideas, experiences and imagination
  • Develop art and design techniques
  • Be taught about a range of artists, describe the differences and similarities between different practices and disciplines, and making links to their own work

English Speaking and Listening

  • remember specific points that interest them
  •  ask questions to clarify their understanding
  • use language and actions to explore and convey situations, characters and emotions
  • create and sustain roles individually and when working with others.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

Pupils will:

  • Gain knowledge and understanding of the roles of artists.
  • Further their awareness of different types of artwork.
  • Gain an understanding of what an art gallery is.


Pupils will:

  • Improve their speaking and listening skills in a group discussion context.
  • Develop vocabulary and speaking and listening skills through. questioning and discussion
  • Develop their artistic technique.
  • Improve their understanding of an art gallery.


Pupils will be introduced to:

  • That artworks are produced by an artist.
  • That the collections held in the gallery are varied.
  • The role of a national gallery like the Walker Art Gallery.


Pupils will:

  • Be inspired to look at paintings and visit art galleries.
  • To enjoy visual art and accept that it is subjective – different people will like different pieces.
  • See the Walker Art Gallery as an enjoyable and creative place to visit.