Published 27.01.2016
by Kids’ Own

New features on the Arts in Education Portal

The Arts in Education Portal, the key national digital resource of arts in education practice in Ireland, was launched in May 2015. The Portal is an initiative of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and the Department of Education and Skills. Kids’ Own – in consultation with an editorial committee – led the development of content for the Portal and are currently content managers.

Development has been ongoing and a range of new features has been added to the Portal in recent months.

A free online course ‘Foundations of Documenting your Work’ with artist Ann Donnelly began in January. This course is now sold out. Following completion of the course, a documentation pack will be made available on the Portal in March.

In December, the Portal Artist Video Series was launched, giving insight into art form, artist process and practice in order to build a resource that develops awareness around the arts and specific art forms based on the real lives of contemporary artists. The first video focused on contemporary visual arts, with visual artist Rhona Byrne in conversation with Katy Fitzpatrick.

The Reading Room opened in the autumn, a space for critical reflection and background theory relating to arts in education practice. New critical essays commissioned by the Portal are published on an ongoing basis. To date, these essays have included ‘Artistic Enquiry in Early Childhood Education’ by Carmel Brennan, Head of Practice, Early Childhood Ireland, and ‘Teaching Through Contemporary Art’ by art teacher Kieran Gallagher.

Recommended Reads is a monthly initiative in which teachers, artists and those working in the sector share the books they are reading that are inspiring them in their work. To date, Orla Kenny of Kids’ Own, Emelie Fitzgibbon of Graffiti Theatre Company have shared their favourite reads. This month it’s the turn of primary school teacher Ross Ó Corráin. Submissions for Recommended Reads are accepted on an ongoing basis. Email [email protected] and, if possible, include a picture of the book and a picture of yourself too.


The Portal Directory is an evolving resource which aims to support local connectivity and profile arts in education supports and providers at both national and local level.

Projects/Partnerships have been a key feature on the Portal from the beginning. Each month, artists and teachers/early childhood practitioners share the projects they’ve been working on and the learning from these projects. This January, Úlla Beag, an early years collaboration between artist Lynn Kenny, teacher Denise Sheridan and children from Úlla Beag Preschool in County Clare is the featured project/partnership.


The next deadline for Project/Partnership submissions is Wednesday 30th March 2016. The submission template can be downloaded here.

The Portal is currently inviting the arts in education community to share creative projects they are producing as part of the 2016 centenary celebrations.