First real visit to Raheen National School – tracing, mapping and photography

Ann Kelliher ( teacher) had a warm welcome for me that November morning and chaperoned me to the school. The children were lively, friendly and excited.

I introduced the creative ideas to both classes  – letting them know that they were to be my eyes and ears and that  I hoped they would be able  introduce me to their location through mapping, walking, photography and drawing. The teachers were very helpful and we handed out the disposable cameras, which were to be shared between two and three participants. We made name labels for each camera and explained that the pictures could only be taken outside. When asked what they would find of interest around the area – they told me about mountains (The Paps) and lots of  wild life including foxes and squirrels, rivers, trees and plenty of  farm life – tractors, cows, donkeys.

I then set up the camera and tripod to take  individual photographs of each child’s hands (with a view to later superimposing their drawings of maps onto the images of their hands through the use of layering and  photoshop) .

In separate 20 minute sessions the children guided  me to places around  of interest to them around the  school – I photographed these sites –  which ranged from a hole in the hedgerow to a football goals and an old ruined schoolhouse.

In the final session of the day we used  very simple ink and line drawings they traced the routes and walks we had taken all around the area.

I was sorry to leave but excited to continue working with the group.

Ann let me know that she would send the cameras back after Christmas to be developed – after the children had taken pictures of sites of interest to them.

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