Creative Partnerships May 2005

Animated exploration of the emotional challenges faced in crossing over from Primary to Secondary School by children from both sides of the divide. The focus is the exchange of ideas between the year groups, using animated self portraits and graphic montage to express identity and the changing landscape of growing up.

"Secondary School was here today/I don't know what, what to say/I don't know what, what to do/So I just say: Let's learn with you!" Rap by Kelsie, Year 6

project aims:

"Animation is an ideal medium for creative expression in schools as it enables children to combine graphic and photographic imagery, text, voice, sound and movement. Kids who don't consider themselves to be 'good at art' can hook into the immediacy of frame-by-frame film-making: seeing the results on-screen as they record the movement of their artwork is a great way for kids to gain confidence. "
Stuart Moore of Sundog Media

the project concept

To open up a channel of communication between Year 6 and Year 8 at the Stoke Damerel Primary School and Stoke Damerel Community College in Plymouth, and to establish a conversation in animation and digital video which could be developed and built on in the future.

"We wanted to introduce animation as a means of artistic expression, and as a way for the children to communicate and reflect on their feelings: to defuse anxieties of the younger kids by giving them a voice, and to remind the older kids just how scary the transition is when we move from the intimacy and familiar territory of a caring Primary School to the impersonal - and often overwhelming - environment of 'big school'.
Right from the start we all 'clicked': both Marie Coggins and Caroline Carpenter, the teachers we worked with, were truly inspirational: their enthusiasm and energy drove the project forward; and the wholehearted support given to us by Richard Marsh, Headteacher at Stoke Damerel Primary, contributed in a big way to the success of this ambitious project."
Kayla Parker of Sundog Media


To establish a resource at each school for future 'in house' projects; and to demonstrate that art can be extended into digital media, and that the process of exploring ideas is important. This project enabled the teachers at the two schools to work in collaboration with experienced creative professionals from Sundog Media, and to gain confidence in the use of animation concepts and technologies.


The animations and video documentaries created during the project were screened to all children from the two schools, teachers and parents, and forms the basis of an archive focussing on this key transition in children's emotional and educational development. We hope the pioneering work we achieved together on Transitions can be shared with other educators as an example of best practice.

project diary

During our early meetings to decide on how we could approach ideas of children's identity in a shared animation and digital video project between the Secondary and Primary Schools, we planned four elements:

1 This is What We're Scared of

Year 6 children recorded their fears on video about progressing to Secondary School. This video was shown to Year 8 pupils at Stoke Damerel Community College, and was screened to a wider audience of children from other schools, parents and teachers at the upSTART film festival for young film-makers in Plymouth.

2 This is What it's Really Like

Year 8 then responded to the fears expressed by the younger children and filmed a guided tour around their school.

3 Animation Day One - I Remember

a group of 11 older children came to the Primary School. Each person animated their self-portrait on the animation rostrum to describe a personal memory of Primary School. The children also interviewed each other and made a recording of their memories for the soundtrack.

4 Animation Day Two - Feelings

12 children from Year 6 animated words they'd chosen to describe how they felt about moving on from Primary School. Each child also animated a self portrait in their favourite place in the school and recorded each other describing their feelings.

an exhibition of Transitions artwork with screenings of the animations and films was held at Stoke Damerel Community College in June 2005