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Firing Up

The Firing Up programme was developed to ‘re-fire’ dormant kilns in secondary schools across the UK, enabling teachers to teach ceramics confidently and inspire students. 

Between  2010 and 2013, Firing Up teamed Higher Education Institution ceramics departments up with local secondary schools and artists and makers. It supported 63 schools, working with 3,700 pupils and 161 teachers.

The programme’s core elements were designed to:

  1. Raise awareness of the importance of clay in our everyday lives, and in world cultures;
  2. Support schools in using this medium creatively and confidently, and in optimising its educational value for students and creating sustainable local links;
  3. Showcase and exhibit the work of young people; and
  4. Demonstrate the links between clay-work and the wider creative industry sector, showing that working in ceramics is a viable career choice.

Firing Up was made possible by generous support from Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Paul Hamlyn Foundation over three years, and commitment from a steering committee that included representatives from National Arts Learning Network (NALN), the National Society for Education in Art and Design (NSEAD), University of the Arts London, Clayground Collective and Ofsted.

The Crafts Council is currently exploring the future of its work with schools. If you have an interest in working with us, please contact participation@craftscouncil.org.uk

Firing Up on film