The Dragon’s Dream project was finalised after a visit to Gelli and Penyrenglyn Primary Schools to talk to the teachers and pupils about the project.

A key aim was was to use creativity to engage with the young learners, some from challenging backgrounds, and to offer inspiration to all involved.

The project’s production, was a 3-month period in the schools, summer 2019. A screening event took place at the legendary Parc and Dare Cinema, 12th November 2019.

Here are some of the things that the teachers and pupils said about the project and the screening:

Karen Jacobs, head-teacher, Penyrenglyn: “The levels of excitement were very apparent, and for those pupils from deprived backgrounds with limited opportunities, the project enriched their life experiences and through the arts and digital literacy. This resulted in the children sustaining high levels of engagement and motivation throughout the project, always looking forward to the next session. The screening of their work at the local theatre was a unique and amazing experience for them.”

Eva, student, Penyrenglyn: “I enjoyed working with my friends to create such a wonderful movie. And when we went to the cinema,  my mam, she was so proud.   She said that she wished and she could do something like that.” 

Jensen, student, Penyrenglyn, “My  grandma and my dad came (to the cinema) and they said that I had a really good voice for the king!”

Tyler, student, Gelli, “My favorite thing about the project was the animation.  I felt quite embarrassed at first, hearing my voice in the cinema, and then thought I was hilarious so why should I be embarrassed?”

Brandon, student, Gelli, “I really enjoyed seeing my character on the poster and in the film at the beginning. I loved going to the theatre and the mountain and the drawing. My mam kept the invitation letter, because my character is on there, and she really enjoyed seeing the film opening too. She took loads of pictures and said she was really proud of me.”

An important outcome from the project, for the teachers involved and Vision Fountain, were the pre-project teachers workshops. 

Louise Johnson, class teacher , Gelli: “After the Dragon’s Dream project I definitely felt more up skilled, especially in the use of a camera, understanding the animation process and how a film could be created from scratch.” 

Carol Flannery Davies, Head, Gelli:  “Staff learnt skills from partners they are now able to use in the classroom and they can also disseminate them to colleagues.” 

Thanks to Arts Council of Wales for the opportunity to undertake this innovative creative arts and animation project in the Rhondda.