Mrs Swain was a key member of the school’s reception class staff, who passed away in 2017. The children’s quiet garden was suggested as a poignant memorial for Mrs Swain, who was happiest when surrounded by children.
Jan Allen, Lecturer for Creative Arts, Bracknell and Wokingham College organised and arranged for the Level 3 Art and Design Extended Diploma students to design and paint the mural as part of their qualification.
At the beginning of the year, the college students were presented with a brief and then came up with designs that were presented to the school council. The Council is made up of children from each year group from the school. Following the meeting, a final design for the mural was displayed in the school.
The paintings were created with an aim to raise spirits and have a positive impact on the children’s mental health and wellbeing.
This collaborative project enabled students from Bracknell and Wokingham College to see the positive impact that the mural would have on the children within the school, while working towards their qualification.
A team of students and staff from the college painted the mural over three days before it was finally unveiled at the end of term.
The paint for the mural was supplied by The Green Machine in Bracknell, part of the Community RePaint network sponsored by Dulux, which redistributes un-used and leftover paint for other purposes.
Julia Evans, Headteacher from Winkfield St. Mary’s C of E Primary School, said: “We are delighted with the mural which students from Bracknell and Wokingham College have painted on the walls of our Quiet Garden.
“The students went to great lengths to research the school’s values and ethos to create a design which included images that are meaningful to the children – it made them feel very special!
“This area of our school was unfinished and looking rather tatty, but now it looks bright and cheerful – everyone wants to be in there! We would like to express huge thanks to the students and staff who have made this possible. The design will brighten our school for many years to come.”
Ginette Cox, Activate Learning’s Regional Director of Delivery for Creative Arts, Berkshire, said: “We are delighted to be able to enrich our students’ programmes with community-based projects.
“One of Activate Learning’s key strategic objectives is to provide an innovative, responsive curriculum, that builds a talent pipeline for business.
“Experience of work through the use of live briefs is one step towards enabling students to better understand how they might develop greater industry focus as they build their portfolio of artistic skills.
“The work with Winkfield St. Mary’s C of E Primary School is just one of those briefs and the students were absolutely delighted to go into the school, speak with pupils and create a mural that reflected both what the pupils wanted and the story behind the creation of Mrs Swain’s Quiet Garden.”
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