Pupils to make mosaics at new East Oxford Community Classics Centre

thisisoxfordshire: Dr Lorna Robinson, centre, from Isis Project with Katie McMullin, 14, David Gimson, Harris Grant-Forster, 14, and Roisin Broderick, 15 pictured in October at the launch of the new Classics learning centre Dr Lorna Robinson, centre, from Isis Project with Katie McMullin, 14, David Gimson, Harris Grant-Forster, 14, and Roisin Broderick, 15 pictured in October at the launch of the new Classics learning centre

ASPIRING designers at Cheney School have the chance to create a Roman mosaic for the school site.

The “Making Project” is the latest scheme organised by the Iris Project, which unveiled the East Oxford Community Classics Centre at the school last month.

It is hoped the project will run annually and give pupils the chance to produce classical products such as a chariot, a sundial, a water-clock, a toga and a mosaic.

Pupils in year nine and 10 will get the chance to work with experts on production, visit heritage sites and then work as a team to create their product.

In the first year, pupils will create a mosaic at the entrance to the building in Cheney Lane, Headington, where the new centre, opened by Professor Mary Beard on October 24, is housed.

The project will start in January with a trip to the Roman villa at Chedworth, Gloucestershire, and a guide to Roman mosaics, before construction in the spring.

Iris Project director Lorna Robinson said: “The children are enthusiastic about it and it’s another exciting thing for them.

“We are working with pupils involved in design technology, since the project will be relevant to their interests, and also means that classics will be reaching pupils who might not otherwise think about learning those topics.

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“The pupils will be involved in choosing the design as well as creating the mosaics.

“We are extremely grateful to the Oxford Classics Conclave for providing £5,000 funding for this exciting project.”

Oxford University classics graduate Dr Robinson set up the charity in 2006 and it has been taught in the city in conjunction with Oxford University since 2007.

It uses storytelling and myths to teach the ancient language and has visited Pegasus Primary in Blackbird Leys, Bayards Hill Primary in Barton, St Michael’s in Marston, North Hinksey Primary, St Thomas More Primary in Kidlington and Sandhills Primary.

The East Oxford Community Classics Centre was set up to provide a learning venue at Headington’s Cheney School, which was chosen as it is the only city secondary state school with Latin on its curriculum. The next big event is a Roman medicine day on January 15, which will include ancient medical instruments and people dressed up as Roman doctors.

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