Pottering about and creating lasting memories

Lorna Watkinson, right, and Warkworth First School teacher Pam Coils wave goodbye to students from Warkworth First School. Picture by Paula Rosa Photography

Lorna Watkinson, right, and Warkworth First School teacher Pam Coils wave goodbye to students from Warkworth First School. Picture by Paula Rosa Photography

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Year Four pupils who are leaving their first school to go to middle school have had fun creating lasting memories by being creative with pottery.

Students at Warkworth First School have designed images on ceramic mugs to capture lasting memories about their time at the school.

The designs include thumbprints of classmates, faces, insects and Warkworth Castle. Each mug also includes elements of art, maths and literacy and each is personal to the child. The unique mugs are the brainchild of Warkworth entrepreneur Lorna Watkinson, who set up her business, Rainbow Pottery Painting, in 2012 after taking her redundancy after working for 17 years for Procter and Gamble in the media-advertising department. Her mobile pottery-painting studio goes wherever her customers need her and lately she has had a large amount of success across schools in Newcastle, North Tyneside and Northumberland. The unique and individual designs are made by the children and then fired in Lorna’s professional kiln. Once fired, the mugs gain vivid colours, a gloss finish and are presented to the children as a memory of their time at the school.

Form teacher Pam Coils was delighted with the pottery paining session. She said: “This was a lovely fun activity for our leavers which also allows them to reflect as learners about what aspects of the curriculum they have enjoyed and have strengths in. The session also contributed to a more strategic purpose for our school too as it creates confident individuals and successful learners who care about the community through the core school values of love, forgiveness and friendship.”

Lorna is now in talks with other schools in Northumberland who are moving from three tier to two tier status as it will create a lasting memory of schools that are destined to close with the changes. Warkworth First changes to a primary school in September. She said: “We are creating a piece of history as well as having fun. People will look back at their mugs in years to come with fondness and a sense of nostalgia.”

As well as working in schools, Lorna takes her unique workshops to local community groups, care homes and small businesses. She is also working with larger corporate businesses to provide team building and staff development sessions.

For more details, visit www.rainbowpotterypainting.co.uk