Young learners find inspiration for art trail at children’s hospice

Date published: 26 January 2024

Pupils from two local schools had a real hoot visiting the Woodland Walk at children’s hospice Chestnut Tree House recently. Children from Chichester Free School and Boxgrove C of E Primary School had the opportunity to spend time learning about owls as part an educational programme linked to the charity’s Big Hoot art trail coming to Chichester and Arundel this summer.

Andy Kendall of Owls About Town in Chichester shared lots of information about these amazing birds and all children had the opportunity to hold an owl. They also learned about Chestnut Tree House, the importance of children’s hospices and why fundraising is so important.

Both schools were among the first to sign up for The Little Hoot, an offshoot of the major public art trail this summer. Participating schools and groups will design and paint their own smaller owl statue which will be publicly displayed for the duration of the trail, after which it is theirs to keep.

Chichester Free School art teacher Andy Lean said the visit will provide plenty of inspiration: “The children adored seeing the owls, especially Wizard the barn owl. We’ve had a really positive response to The Little Hoot with lots of children keen to get involved.

“The fact that the finished statue will be seen by the public is a big deal for pupils because they will be representing their school to the wider community. The fact that the owl will be coming back to school is also important because it’s an opportunity to become part of the school’s history. We’re also planning a school exhibition of all the designs so even the ones that aren’t successful will be recognised.”

How your school or youth group can get involved

There’s still time for schools and groups to sign up to The Big Hoot’s Little Hoot Learner Programme. We’re on the lookout for Primary schools, pre-schools and secondary schools. As well as youth and sports groups. Find out about the Learner Programme for schools and youth groups.

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