St. Monica’s RC Primary School

The A to Z of [New Year's] Resolutions

The A to Z of [New Year’s] Resolutions has been produced by Year 4 children at St. Monica’s RC Primary School, Hoxton in collaboration with artist Maria Amidu.

Maria devised a short project during autumn term 2012 which enabled seven children to participate in workshops to support their ongoing SEAL – social and emotional aspects of learning – sessions at school.

Using language and creativity as the central focus, the children explored how they felt about themselves and each other, the ways they express themselves, and how their words and actions affect other people.

While working in the participation space at PEER, the group made their own journals to record their thoughts and feelings and created life-size paper cut-outs of themselves as a designated space to express complimentary and positive feelings about one another. They also created faces showing different emotions, explored mood through the work in Keith Coventry’s exhibition at PEER and designed their own alphabet. Their sessions culminated in the opportunity to convert some of their words into print during a letterpress printing workshop at New North Press, Hoxton.

The A to Z of [New Year’s] Resolutions poster is the culmination of the project – a unique, personal, graphic interpretation of the alphabet and a list of aspirational words chosen with the children to encourage them and their peers to be and do their best.” Maria Amidu

Maria Amidu is an artist based in London. The A to Z of [New Year’s] Resolutions marks the beginning of Maria Amidu’s exploration into emotion and creativity, particularly with children. Maria has been awarded a 2013 Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship to visit exemplary creative and emotional learning projects in USA and The Netherlands. Commissioned by People United, she will be artist-in-residence at Turner Contemporary from June to September 2013 during Curiosity: Art and the Pleasures of Knowing, developing a new work as part of People United’s Art and Kindness research project.

St. Monica’s RC Primary School is a mixed Roman Catholic primary school for 3–11 year olds based in Hoxton Square, east London. The school currently caters for 235 pupils. Maria Amidu began working with pupils from St. Monica’s RC Primary School in September 2010.

This project marks the final element of a two-year pilot programme supported by Paul Hamlyn Foundation.