Children from Acre Hall, Elmridge, Barton Clough and Lime Tree took part in a one-day Maths Masterclass at The Whitworth. Working with resident artists and mathematicians, they explored mathematical themes using a variety of media.

Workshop one – symmetry and pattern

The day began by exploring different kinds of symmetry using mirrors on artwork and creating kaleidoscopes. The children then explored the gallery independently, making their our symmetrical discoveries in the space. They completed the session my completing their own Minecraft wallpaper by creating punchcards from the patterns and drawings that they made.  

Workshop two – making shapes from random walks

In their next session, the children explored what is ‘random’ and related probability and dice rolling to moving in different directions, which ended in producing their own ‘random walk’ tapestry.

Our ‘Random Walk’ tapestry

Facilitator and artist Jasmine Walne described the activity for us:

“The idea is to use the random walks that the students have generated and create a textiles/mixed media collage piece from this. So this will be taking inspiration from the shapes generated in the walks, and using the collections of the gallery for inspiration to create the pieces. This is to show how we can use maths as a starting point for a creative outcome, and how we can use anything as inspiration for art!

We will be using mixed media – so a range of felts, threads, wools, tapes, fabrics etc to create the pieces. It will be up to the students to decide what to use, depending on what elements of the gallery collections they have been looking at and also the outcome of their random walk. This will mean everyone will leave with something completely unique, even though they have all used the same starting points from the maths section of the session.”

We’d like to thank The Whitworth for this brilliant experience which was wholly enjoyed by the children and our staff. We’ll be taking lots of ideas and inspiration from the day back to the classroom.