Bronze #TICE Creative Enterprise workshop

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TICE Creative Enterprise workshop – South Shields Community School

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South Shields Community School held the first Bronze Stage Creative Enterprise one-day workshop with 30 pupils from Year 9. This introductory day sees students starting their TICE Creative Enterprise journey with the opportunity to go on to two Silver Stage workshop days out in industry environments, followed by three Gold Stage workshop days completing specific projects before a Final Show at Sunderland University.

Jenny Barrett, TICE Managing Director and Lee Casey, Creative Enterprise mentor began by introducing ‘This is Creative Enterprise (TICE)’ with a synopsis of their own career paths within the creative industries and their roles within TICE on this particular programme.

It was straight onto the first team activity, and a creative one of course! Split into 6 teams of 5, groups were given 15 balloons to blow up, 4 sheets of plain paper and one roll of sticky tape. The challenge to produce a model sculpture in 25 minutes using only the materials provided which must be as tall as possible but not smaller than 1.5m, should be able to stand without support and be capable of being moved for display. If any balloons popped they would be deducted from the height at the end!

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So as balloons were blown and sculpture plans made, the room filled with an energetic buzz as teams tried to make sure their creations would be the tallest and most stable! As the time was up teams frantically tried to finish their masterpieces, the sound of popping balloons to a chorus of ‘No’s’ before the big reveals. Teams pitched their sculptures briefly on why theirs should be chosen and with a strict eye Jen & Lee looked at whether the criteria of the brief was fulfilled. With an excellent effort by all the teams it was determined after a final vote that the ‘The Big Orange Thing’ won! This first creative exercise was deemed a success with students recognising it is good to work with others they wouldn’t usually do so and to practice working to a deadline in a group activity.

The creative industries are typically within the arts, culture, business and technology sectors and therefore associated with creativity, knowledge and information. Worth a staggering £76.9 billion collectively in 2015, students were asked to consider next “what are the creative industries and can you name them if you know Fashion is the first such industry?” Shout outs included ‘Graphics’, ‘Photography’ and ‘Music’ with ‘Film’, Computer Science’ and ‘Creative Enterprise’ being added to the growing list.

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The types of jobs within the Fashion and Graphics sector were introduced with teams asked to come up with as many jobs as possible within the remaining industries and which area they would potentially like to work in. The lists by no means definitive gave students an insight into industry sectors with considerably more job options than they had previously thought.
To begin the second session students were asked which creative industry did they have an interest in and new teams were formed for ‘Fashion’, ‘Music’, ‘Photography’, Computer Science and Graphics’ and a ‘Not Sure’ group.

The next challenge was to inspire creative thinking with the opportunity to allow complete freedom of innovation in developing an idea, then exploring its options through initial research and development. The theme of Star Wars was presented and teams were asked to come up with an idea of a product or service, which an alien known as ‘Burt’ could take back to his planet and potentially sell to explain what Star Wars was!!! Everything and anything could be considered! Students embarked enthusiastically brainstorming their ideas, talking through concepts and researching online to see if ideas they had were unique and could be considered as ‘niche’. As the session continued, ideas were built upon and examples of original and innovative ideas developed. Workstations were a hive of activity with students using all the resources available at their disposable and utilising mentor support.

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Teams were asked to also produce a PowerPoint presentation covering the ‘Who, What, Where, When and Why’ as elements within defining their target audience. The final ideas were presented back to the whole group as a short pitch.

The high standard of ideas generated in this task saw teams working well. The ‘Computer Science and Graphics’ team for example designed a skin cover for a games console and the ‘Fashion’ team a collection using different fabric techniques, illustrated on a carefully designed mood board. However the team leaving a lasting entrepreneurial impression was the ‘Music’ group, who wrote and performed an original song with very catchy lyrics “Hans Solo, I’m Your Father’ and a cleverly designed bespoke song cover. This team recognised very early on in the task their individual strengths, utilised them throughout the session and show cased them effectively in the final pitch. Aley, song writer/ singer said “ Today has been a great experience and it’s been useful to think about how the different jobs within the music industry all come together to develop an idea’.

TICE Creative Enterprise from This is Creative Enterprise on Vimeo.

To conclude the workshop the final session included some inspirational examples of young entrepreneurs including a 12-year old App developer. Students were asked to prepare some questions they may like to ask guests such as business owners and creative industry experts who they would be introduced to in the next Silver Stage.

“It has been an inspirational day, and given me a better view on career options within the fashion industry. I am so excited for the next stage!” said Connor.

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With that the Bronze Stage concluded for South Shields Community School (SSCS) and it’s to be determined who will carry on to the Silver Stage for round two of Creative Enterprise. Jenny Barrett said “we are looking for enthusiastic, committed individuals who are genuinely interested in creative enterprise, after today’s workshop with such quality of work and idea generation it’s been great to launch the workshop here at SSCS”.