Thursday, 7 April 2011

Retrospective: Norman School Sketches

When I was at Primary School I was very quiet, shy and softly spoken. I had a suitably wild imagination and the only thing I loved more than pouring over the pages of all my books, was writing the stories themselves. (And of course illustrating them!) I was lucky enough to spend my earliest childhood memories at Norman First School in Norwich. Now I know...everyone believes that the Primary School they went to is the best. Who couldn't love the place that helped them create those warm, fuzzy early memories? But Norman First School was a very special place.
Many of the teachers had been there for decades and community around the school grew in a way that generations of the same family all attended the school. Sometimes only to be taught by the very same teacher! My Dad went to Norman First School back when it was just for boys, and my Grandad did too. He could even remember when the school was nothing more than a hut with a pond (although how much of that was true, you could never know as he forever had a twinkle in his eye when he told me anything!). But let's just say for now, that it is.
So, my past and present collided in 2007 when we were set with the task of carrying out a work placement in the second year of my degree, and the final term in Norman First School's History. I quickly decided that there was nowhere I'd rather spend my time than visiting the school, learning to teach a little bit and documenting this great building which would be knocked down that Summer. And I guess you could say everything just fell into place. It was almost too perfect.
As you can imagine, I had an amazing time with all of the children drawing and doodling away with them (hopefully teaching them a few things too!) And when I wasn't teaching or sitting in on lessons I found more time to seek out little details and corners to draw...

' A Window is an excellent place to hang things'

'Australia and Egypt'

' Everything you need for a Reception Class'

'Friday the Eighteenth of May, Two Thousand and Seven'

'Graham the Sink'

' Little Chairs for Little People'

'Look At Me'

'Mrs Westwood's Cupboard'

'Pots and Papers'

'Projectors are especially good for large groups of Singing Children'

'Remember me, I am the Tree!'



'Stars adorn our Ceiling'

'The bottom of the Projector Screen'

'The Old Brass Bell'

'Three Views from Palm Tree Class'

'Twenty Bottles of Paint on the Shelf...twenty bottles of paint...' 'Wonky Chairs sit at the Table'
Sadly none of the things above I've drawn remain now. The whole school was demolished in 2007 and a spangly new one built in it's place. (I'm sure it's a very nice one...I haven't actually been inside so I can't say for sure!) ;)
Still, it was lovely for me to be able to go back during it's last days and document little pieces of it.
Hope you enjoyed looking!


joanna millington said...

Really lovely! I was lucky enough to revisit my primary school a couple of years back and the memories where overwhelming!
As usual your sketches are beautiful - I particularly like 'Graham the sink', don't know why, but it almost bought a tear to my eye :(

Kirsty Ramsbottom said...

Aww thanks Jo! Graham the sink is my favourite one too...I think I mostly like the fact that he has a name :)
Everything seems so much smaller when you go back doesn't it. (Even though I suspect my height growth since those days were pretty limited! hehe) And you can see out of the windows!

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