Art and Design – making Anglo Saxon Brooches

In Art and Design, Year 4 designed and made Anglo Saxon brooches, in the Spring term.

Anglo Saxon brooches were intricate pieces of jewellery, which were designed to hold up clothing. They were beautiful objects in their own right too, and showed the status of the wearer – the more expensive the materials and the more intricate the design, the more important and wealthy the wearer was. 

Historians know about Anglo Saxon brooches, because of those found in archaeological digs.  One of the most famous Anglo Saxon finds was the dig at Sutton Hoo, in East Anglia, which is thought to have been the burial place of an Anglo Saxon king.  Finds such as this, help historians to learn about life in Britain hundreds of years ago.

Year 4 used photos of these brooches, as the stimulus for their own designs.  As part of the process, they looked at examples of brooches, thought about what materials were used then designed their own.  The children’s designs were created using cardboard, which was then built up with string, matchsticks and paper mâché, to create texture and give the brooch 3D form. 

Finally, the children painted and added more intricate details, such as gems.  The finished brooches looked spectacular, and taught the classes a great deal about multi-media art.