DesignLab Nation Schools’ programme

Would your school like to be part of the Victoria and Albert Museum’s national schools programme, DesignLab Nation?

DesignLab Nation brings together Secondary schools in partnership with the V&A, regional museums and creative industries to inspire students and support teachers through in-depth design projects.  DesignLab Nation is a fully funded project and we are looking for Secondary Schools in the Stoke-on-Trent area to be involved in Spring term 2021, Summer term 2021, Autumn term 2021 or Spring 2022.

What does it include?

  • An in-depth design project for one KS3 or KS4 Design and Technology or Art and Design class (of approx. 16 students) run over one academic term either in Spring 2021, Summer 2021 or Autumn 2021 or Spring 2022. The project would include 4 full day creative sessions led by social artist Rebecca Davies and museum experts at V&A, London and The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent. Students are asked to respond to a design challenge and work through all stages of a design journey (including finding inspiration, writing a brief, experimentation, evaluation). The design challenge we are setting students in 2021 in Stoke-on-Trentis based around Gender and Identity.  Sessions involve creative thinking, critical thinking and collaborative activities, as well as interactive talks, demonstrations and supportive feedback crits.
  • Engaging access to the collections at V&A and The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, either in your school though outreach and creative packs or via trips with social distancing in place.
  • A flexible delivery plan adhering to the health and safety requirements of your school. Currently (Spring 2021 and Summer 2021 ) sessions can be delivered either at The Potteries Museum &  Art Gallery (COVID-19 Secure) or at your school. We would hope to welcome DLN schools to the V&A (COVID-19 Secure) for a day trip as part of projects from Autumn 2021 onwards depending on COVID-19 measures. If this is not possible students will engage with the V&A in an online capacity and via our loans programme. Depending on a school’s requirements, availability and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, sessions can either be delivered in person with social distancing in place, or via Creative packs including step by step instruction videos, resources, materials and equipment.
  • All materials, equipment and resources in order complete projects.
  • Where possible and dependent on COVID-19 guidelines regarding social distancing transport to and from The Potteries Museum &  Art Gallery can be provided. Where possible and dependent on COVID-19 guidelines regarding social distancing transport to and from the V&A will be provided.
  • An end of project online celebration where students can showcase their designs and celebrate their achievements.
  • An online D&T focused continued professional development (CPD) session for teachers and school staff. 
  • Support from artist and museum staff to help students and teachers to work on the project between workshops.

Leading Artist

This is our third year delivering the DesignLab Nation programme with the V&A London. This year we are excited to be working with social artist Rebecca Davies. Rebecca uses illustration and performance in her work to communicate about social issues. She is experienced in working with communities, and  co-leads on The Portland Inn project which is well renowned in the city for the work it has done in partnership with families living in the area. She lead part of our second year programme on social commentary. Using games, discussion, illustration and print making to develop student’s ideas and designs. She also teaches at Staffordshire University. Find out more about Rebecca’s work here.

Find out more: Information for schools

Contact us:

Previous project examples – Year 2 report