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Take One Picture: an exhibition of work by primary schools inspired by Mignard’s ‘Marquise de Seignelay and Two of her Sons’

Take One Picture is the National Gallery’s countrywide scheme for primary schools. Each year the Gallery focuses on one painting from the collection with the aim of inspiring creative teaching and learning. The challenge for schools is to use this single image as a stimulus for cross-curricular work linked to the National Curriculum. Teachers can attend a one-day Continuing Professional Development (CPD) course at the Gallery.

This simple holistic way of working, which aligns with the DCSF Primary National Strategy:Excellence and Enjoyment, has proved extremely effective as it makes learning relevant to the pupils by breaking down traditional barriers between subject areas.

In an independent evaluation conducted by the University of Greenwich, which looked at the impact of the Take One Picture scheme from 2000 to 2006, 92 per cent of teachers who have used the approach believed it improved their pupils' learning and performance, 90 per cent said that using one image in this way enhanced children's ability to work together and 87 per cent said that it increased communication skills.

During the academic year 2004/5 many hundreds of primary schools throughout the UK used the 17th-century painting ‘The Marquise de Seignelay and Two of her Sons’ by Pierre Mignard as a stimulus for work across the curriculum, and 180 schools submitted work to the Gallery.

This exhibition contains a small selection of work generated by Take One Picture, which involved over 32,000 children, teachers, teaching assistants and parents. The painting inspired projects in literacy, numeracy, history, science, citizenship, craft and design technology (CDT), and information and communication technology (ICT), as well as art.

Schools exhibiting at the National Gallery in 2006 are:

  • Burrington C. E. V. A. Primary School, Devon
  • Childs Hill School, London
  • Egerton C. E. Primary School, Kent
  • Flore C. E. Primary School, Northampton
  • Ormesby Primary School, Middlesbrough
  • Southam Primary School, Warwickshire
  • Stratford Primary School, Stratford-upon-Avon
  • St Saviour’s Junior School, Bath
  • The Oxfordshire Hospital School

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