Sightlines Initiative

promoting creative and reflective practice in early childhood education


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Sightlines Initiative has collaborated with architects, educators and artists in designing several proposed Early Childhood Environments. The first such project  'Saltwell presentation elevationTowers' , an innovative early childhood learning unvironment, though unrealised, resulted in the inception of Sightlines Initiative. The quality of the educative built environment remains an integral element of all Sightlines' early years projects.

 Click for more information:picture1

Saltwell Towers

Oasis (Valley View)





“We value space because of its power to organise, promote pleasant relationships, create a handsome environment, provide changes, promote choices and activity, and it’s potential for sparking all sorts of social, affective, and cognitive learning.  We also think that the space has to be a sort of aquarium that mirrors the ideas, values, attitudes, and cultures of the people who live within it.”

Reggio Children - The Hundred Languages of Children -2nd edition



Globe Gallery Exploratorium 
The aims of the project:

  • to establish an interest group to explore possibilities for future development of a globeCreative Exploratorium within North Tyneside.
  • to create professional development opportunities for educators and artists in North Tyneside.
  • to provide an example of creative use of space, equipment and materials
  • to provide opportunities for children to visit and experience the space in order to demonstrate the value of the pedagogical approach to their  educators.

 Key Elements

  •  Exhibition
  •  Creative Studio and Sound Exploratorium
  •  Seminars
  •  Project Presentations

Globe Gallery Exploratorium Intro Doc

The Fantastic Attic child building on light boxes
In June 2000 Sightlines Initiative transformed the Great Hall of Newcastle Discovery Museum.into a creative learning exploratorium for local preschool children and their teachers.
Artists and trainee teachers worked with visiting groups of children within an extensive, specially assembled studio and investigative space, mixing resources with constructions designed to encourage children and teachers to develop new experiences, reflections and inspirations.
The ‘Fantastic Attic’ project was inspired by the potential of the Great Hall , used to host  England’s first showing of Reggio Emilia’s major exhibition on young children’s potential and creativity ‘The Hundred Languages of Children’ in 1996, and by the pilot events which ran concurrently in Tyneside preschools. 
Fantastic Attic Evaluation

Floor Fourstudio

A four week project where Sightlines Initiative again transformed the Great Hall of the Discovery Museum, Newcastle upon Tyne into an exciting, learning exploratorium for young children and their educators. Sightlines expert team worked with artists and designers to create the creative spaces and worked closely with educators and children to demonstrate creative approaches to learning and teaching. The project served the local area and was funded by Surestart 

Floor Four Exhibition

magic wardrobe outdoorsThe Magic Wardrobe 
A four week 'Centre for Curiosity & Imagination' in collaboration with Surestart West Gate,
Newcastle Summer 2002. 

Sightlines initiative transformed the Nuns Moor Play Centre in the West End of newcastle to provide a creative exploratorium for local schools, children and families. School groups visited reguarly over the 4 week period and project facilitators carefully documented the explorations of the children. The project team provided professional development sessions for the educators and families and ran follow up sessions back at school.

Magic Wardrobe Evaluation

In June 2000, a four-week creative event for pre-school children took place at the Great Hall of Newcastle Discovery Museum.
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Fantastic Project Evaluation

During Spring and Summer of 2007, the children from Wharrier St. Playgroup spent one session each week at Ouseburn Farm with their educators and an artist-photographer team. The interests and fascinations that emerged there were supported back at playgroup by the project team and the children’s usual educators, shaping the learning and play that occurred there.

Click Here for Slideshow