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Case Study: Arts Award Discover

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MLC is an inclusive, community-based centre of excellence. Since opening our doors in 2007, our teams have helped thousands of people to realise their potential and artistic aspirations throughout the UK, France, Italy and beyond.

Encouraging youngsters to investigate and have a positive experience of the Arts is of paramount importance to us here at MLC. We often see first-hand how it broadens the horizons of all those who take part and helps nurture what is usually an already healthy appetite for creativity in children.

Tailoring creative pathways to suit the individual needs of our students is central to what we believe in. No two people are the same and therefore no two journeys will ever be the same. Arts Award Discover is an introductory award, designed for ages 5 and above, but is open to children and young people aged up to 25. Learners are encouraged to create an individual portfolio which demonstrates how they have participated in arts activities, researched artists and their work and share what they have discovered with others.

MLC delivers the entire suite of Arts Award courses at its centres in the UK and in a variety of other settings – schools, youth groups, religious groups, home study students and more. Due to the government restrictions placed upon us all by COVID 19, we opted to deliver Arts Award Discover to a group of youngsters entirely online.

Our Approach

Safeguarding toolkits are produced for the families of those who wish to participate. All online sessions delivered by MLC are recorded, partly for these purposes, but this also extends the learning environment as participants are able to watch the recording again, after the session, gaining additional enjoyment and information from their MLC tutor.

Our young cohort – together with their families – were invited to take part in an online orientation session. This was designed to give examples of how far reaching the Arts are and to demonstrate the depth and breadth that might be possible throughout the course. The cohort were then given tasks to complete prior to subsequent online video sessions. Towards the end of the course, the young participants were invited to share their work to the group and the results were incredible!

Impact

Due to the circumstances surrounding the lockdown and the revised timetable provided by schools, we found that families often worked together on different elements of the course. Parents and carers frequently reported a sense of their own enjoyment when watching their children work through the tasks. A greater appreciation for the Arts was felt by all, as were the merits of their children pursuing their chosen art form.

Here at MLC, the increased frequency of the sessions helped achieve greater contact with our cohort of students. Previously, tutor-student contact between lessons has been limited. Running these courses instilled a real sense of community and inclusivity, both of which are amongst our core beliefs.

Discussion

The success enjoyed by our cohort was far reaching. So much so that it caught the attention of the awarding body responsible for Arts Award at Trinity College London. Our CEO, Paul Hose, was invited to take part in a live Q&A session to discuss how MLC approaches delivery. Watch the interview below and get in touch to discover how your child can gain an appreciation for the Arts, develop skills in their preferred pathway, and gain a recognised qualification!

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