Child looking at artwork in Tate LiverpoolEdge Hill University and Tate Liverpool are to deliver a ground-breaking educational programme that uses iconic artworks in new ways.

From Spring 2019 the institutions will begin their Schools in Residence programme. Hosted in Tate Liverpool’s art display Ideas Depot it invites children, staff, and students from City Region schools to use the gallery as a learning resource where they will spend a week in residence and their curriculum will be delivered using exhibited artwork as a way of teaching core subjects.

Ideas Depot features artists such as Salvador Dali, Mona Hatoum, Henri Matisse, and Chris Ofili. It is a colourful and inviting space showing iconic paintings, sculptures, and photographs from the Tate collection of modern and contemporary art. The display has been designed by architect Sam Jacob to resemble the ways artworks might be stored, usually behind the scenes.

In anticipation of each residency – with one taking place per term – the pupils and their teacher will visit behind the scenes at Tate Liverpool’s to see and select the works they would like to have on display during their residency.

The display has been developed in parallel with the initial phases of research Edge Hill University Faculty of Education is undertaking with Tate Liverpool and this innovative education and community project aims to inform gallery learning approaches. The project aims to explore new ways for schools to enhance and enrich teaching and learning, and for teachers, children and their families to enjoy and develop a sense of ‘ownership’ of museum and gallery spaces.

The Schools in Residence programme is the product of many months of work and pilot projects. The first phase saw 150 eight to nine year-old-children participate in workshops with Tate Liverpool artist educator Harriett Hall, programme manager, Dr Deborah Riding and Edge Hill’s Dr Helen O’Keeffe, Nichola Grimshaw and Cait Talbot Landers. Phase two involved classes from LIPA Primary School take up residency in the gallery for two weeks, experiencing their planned curriculum as usual, but delivered using many different spaces as their classroom. Students and staff from Edge Hill, Tate Liverpool and the schools involved reflected on their experiences at the end of each day and the information gathered has helped develop the model for the future Schools in Residence Programme.

Dr Helen O’Keeffe, Associate Dean of Edge Hill’s Faculty of Education, said: “Ideas Depot is an exciting and innovative display which it is hoped will support teachers, children and their families to connect with new and different artworks, seeing how they link to their own lives and school curriculum. The residencies are being developed as a response to the external funding pressures on arts subjects in the curriculum and this helps us to explore a sustainable model where arts learning is embedded into planning. We want teachers to feel confident in using the gallery independently and in creative ways in their teaching.”


Dr Deborah Riding, Programme Manager, Children and Young People, Tate Liverpool added: “Ideas Depot is a very special display at Tate Liverpool that inspires primary aged children to make connections between artworks, their imaginations, and the curriculum. The display also demonstrates the power of collaboration and the exchange of ideas and knowledge. In partnership with Edge Hill we will work with and welcome primary schools from across the region, giving them a space to learn in new and exciting ways.”

Ideas Depot is available for use until Summer 2019.