Vacancy: Freelance Photographer / Creative Practitioner

Teaching Things Differently – Artist Call Out – North East England


The Forge requires two photographers/artist practitioners experienced in working within educational settings to join our team as part of an exciting new Paul Hamlyn Foundation funded Teacher Development programme – Teaching Things Differently. This new programme aims to use photography as a medium to support the teaching of reading and writing skills within schools. This project builds on The Forge’s previous Paul Hamlyn Foundation funded research work that explored the impact of a photography/creative writing intervention on the attainment of year 6 and year 7 transition children. We will harness the learning from this previous programme to create a new two-year teacher development programme in partnership with seven North East primary schools. Please note that this commission is to help us deliver the first year of the programme, however further commissions to support year two delivery may be possible.

This Continuing Professional Development and Learning programme focuses on improving the way teachers deliver literacy lessons within primary settings. This programme is informed by our belief that traditional notions of literacy, and the way we teach literacy, should be challenged and replaced by a more inclusive pedagogy that includes visual and digital literacies.

This will counter the narrow formulaic and behaviourist approach to teaching literacy through a more open-ended exploration of alternate visual literacy approaches, co-created by the two lead photographers and the participating teachers. Teacher participants will be guided to explore the importance of learning “through” photography in order to improve pupils’ literacy and creative writing skills, as well as learning “in” photography, opening up creative opportunities for communication and “meaning-making” within an alternative artform.

The Role

We are seeking two photographers who will be able to work collaboratively with primary school teaching staff, focusing on the extrinsic benefits of applying photography skills to support the literacy curriculum as well as the intrinsic benefits of photography itself.

The focus of our inquiry is to see whether visual literacies (through photography in the first instance) can broaden teachers’ toolkits of literacy strategies and improve academic outcomes. Whilst the immediate focus is to support teachers to use images and photography to support literacy (reading and writing) within the classroom, the broader aim is to influence whole school pedagogies and learning ecologies in visual and other multi-modal literacies.

Our previous Paul Hamlyn Foundation photography based pilot delivered promising results, evidencing notable impact on pupil engagement and outcomes. This new long-term, teacher-focused inquiry will test whether teachers can deliver similar outcomes if they are mentored and supported in their practice by reflective artist practitioners – photographers who are empathetic to the vision of this work and who perceive themselves as co-learners alongside the teachers involved.

Deadline: 5pm on Friday 17 May 2019.

Read more and apply.

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