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  • Kids’  Own
  • Virtually There

    Created by Kids’ Own

    Location: Northern Ireland & South DUblin - Co. Armagh

Project Outline


Virtually There is a long-term innovative virtual artist in residence project run by Kids’ Own Publishing Partnership and funded by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Artist in residence projects are nothing new but this project is breaking boundaries through exploring the potential for creative engagement between artists working from their studio and children and teachers in the classroom using video conferencing technology. The project places the child at the centre of their own learning within the interconnected worlds of the arts, technology and education thereby adopting a rights based approach methodology which promotes children’s right to a voice (Article 12, UNCRC).

In 2013 seven artists were selected to take part in the Virtually There project. A total of six artists and schools are working on the project in Northern Ireland, and one artist and school in Dublin.

There is no doubt about the success of this project and the impact on the childrens’ learning. A summary of project findings by Independent Researcher Dr. Ceilia Keenaghan highlighted that:

"Virtually There impacts on children, teachers and artists at a personal, professional, behavioral and attitudal level. This range of impacts suggests the potential of the project in offering children an educational experience that is suited to their immediate learning and development needs and to the skills and resources they will need to draw on in the future."

"Teachers and artists felt that these children had a new opportunity to voice their opinions and show what work they could do. The children became more creative in their artwork, which also helped in other areas of their learning. The online journals helped the children in their overall learning, as they were viewing their own work online and voicing their opinions after the class. It was felt that the project built on the children’s experience with technology in the home.

ctd ..... this was noted to be particularly true for children previously considered quiet, lacking self-esteem, disruptive, lacking confidence or lacking ability in school work."

The artists, teachers and children participating in this phase of the project are:

Ann Henderson, Ballydown PS, Banbridge (Teacher - Judith White)

Ann Donnelly, Donaghey PS, Dungannon (Teacher - Marcella Wilson)

Sharon Kelly, St Patrick’s PS, Crosmaglen (Teacher - Elaine O’Sullivan)

Andrew Livingstone, Strandtown, PS (Teacher - Vanessa Patton)

Fionnuala Conway, Bocombra PS, Portadown (Teacher - Karen Flack)

Joe Coveney, Coolnafranky, Demesne,Cookstown,Co. Tyrone (Teacher - Joanne Murray)

Maree Hensey, St Thomas NS, Jobstown, Tallaght (Teachers - Fran Myles & Meadhbh Murphy)

The online journal ( provides a space for the artists, teachers and children to reflect on their learning through out the programme.


Project Details

  • Location: Northern Ireland & South DUblin
  • To date: 06/30/2013
  • Length: Ongoing since 2007
  • Participants per session: 23-30
  • Participants in total: 155
  • Age range of participants:
    8-11, 5-7
  • County(ies):
  • Related Organisation(s):
    C2k, AmmA Centre Armagh
  • Funding Bodies:
    South Dublin County Council, Arts Council Northern Ireland
  • Related Artists:
    Fionnuala Conway , Ann Donnelly , maree hensey , Ann Henderson , sharon kelly
  • Other Related Artists:
    Joe Coveney, Andrew Livingstone

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