The Using Cultural Organisations to Raise Levels of Attainment (UCORLA) project based on Treasure Island aimed to provide Year 6 children with access to both cultural and creative opportunities, with the support of a range of cultural partners, that linked to their work in Literacy, History, Geography, DT, Music, Art, Science, Dance and PSHE lessons. As part of the project, Bolton Library lent the school a copy of “Treasure Island” and delivered a KIT quiz based on the text. In addition, Bolton Museum delivered a workshop focussing on exploring artefacts relating to coasts and Bolton Library delivered a workshop focussing on researching coasts, creating stories and creating sound effects. Furthermore, The Phoenix delivered a drama workshop based on the themes in the text “Treasure Island” and Bolton Music Service delivered a Music Live Experience based on the theme of Sea Shanties. Moreover, The Phoenix delivered a dance workshop focussing on Treasure Island and Artists in Schools delivered three visual arts workshops focussing on creating sea creatures. The children’s production of “Treasure Island” was performed at and supported by The Phoenix.
The teacher expressed that the children engaged fully with the project and each child was totally committed to it. The teacher also stated that the project provided excellent opportunities for collaborative work and conveyed that the children responded well to the fact that they were able to see through a project from start to finish. She also added that the fact that the project was relevant to the children due to the cross-curricular links. The teacher also expressed that there was an excitement and buzz from the children when they were working towards the final production as the children helped to direct themselves in various tasks with little help from teachers, for example the children decided where props should be positioned on the stage and they designed both their costumes and the tickets for the final production.
The teacher also expressed that it was really good to teach a topic based project, which was truly cross-curricular. She added that, due to the positive impact the project has had on her class, she would certainly plan to work in a similar way in the future. The teacher also stated that she could really see the benefit incorporating cultural and creative activities and organisations in to her teaching and she has acquired many new skills, such as drama techniques, as a result of the project.