top of page



Are you a teacher or parent or artist educator? 

Do you want to engage more creativity in your professional practice and home life?  


We are artists educators and researchers who teach a range of creative disciplines, from writing to drama to film making, across five countries in Europe. Over 3 years, we have co-produced open access guides which aim to bring creativity into the classroom and home, ensuring that all children engage in creative arts learning. We have shared this knowledge with teachers, pre-service teachers and carers of young people, producing new research into the wellbeing benefits of creative learning for imaginative expression and collective creativity.


This ERASMUS+ funded "arted" project started in November 2020 and is jointly led by Dr Lisa Stephenson and Dr Tom Dobson  from the Carnegie School of Education, Leeds Beckett University. The project draws upon the expertise of the Story Makers Company, for which Lisa is Director, as well partners across Europe.

"arted" employed a participatory co-design model, involving young people, artists, teachers, and parents, to produce a range of inclusive, interactive guides, which focus on how to engage young people with the creative arts.  These guides are open access and include an interactive game and audio-visual immersive experiences of artists in practice.  


The project builds upon research by Story Makers Company which indicates that involvement in the creative arts can impact positively upon young people’s wellbeing.  By transferring the knowledge, skills and practices of artists working in education to teachers, trainee teachers, parents and carers, arted will:

  • improve young people’s wellbeing and engagement in schooling at all ages;

  • reduce early school leaving;

  • strengthen the profile of the teaching profession.


These principles of practice underpin all of our work.

Brave Spaces

1. Creating brave spaces

  • Trusting young people 

  • Embracing diversity and difference to hear all voices 

  • Creating community in a non-judgemental space 

  • Acknowledging young people’s individual histories and experiences and how these might affect the space 

2. Collective Creation

  • Process driven, with considered balance between structure and freedom 

  • Active participation and engagement, which draws upon young people’s lived experiences 

  • Physical, emotional, ethical and cognitive meaning-making 

  • Consideration of how the collective can impact on the individual’s experience (Whose voice is privileged and whose is silenced?)  

Collective Creation
Change Making

3. Change Making

  • Enjoyment, self-expression, confidence (positive wellbeing) 

  • Compassion and empathy, promoting multiple and critical perspectives 

  • Active empowerment and agency building 

  • Promoting change within the community. 


The arted transnational project has been successful in developing not just a set of high-quality professional learning materials but has designed an innovative approach to arts-based learning that ensures that the intellectual outputs created by the consortium will have relevance for a wide range of teachers across sectors, career stages and national contexts in a sustainable manner. In line with feedback from the pilot groups, this takes an anticipation-action-reflection (OECD, 2018) approach modeling activities which are flexible and easily facilitated whilst demonstrating specialist knowledge in relation to creative arts pedagogy. This has resulted in increased understanding about the relevance and importance of arts- based learning for wellbeing across a number of stakeholders. This novel approach has potential to continue to support teachers, parents and carers and pre-service teachers to continue to monitor and develop relevant and high-quality skills and competences necessary for effective arts education within a range of educational and community-based settings. By changing the practices of school leaders and teachers, parents and carers and pre-service teachers, the project will continue to strengthen the teaching profession profile within each respective national context. 

"The activity could be used across the curriculum, I was surprised by the pupils ability to generate ideas contribute inclusively" (teacher)

"I made more friends." (Primary Pupil)

“I had some kind of confidence I have never had- it made me braver. (Secondary pupil)

“This activity greatly helps the development of active listening, beyond creativity and imagination”

“Creativity is much more than just painting but it has to do also with how people interact”(Parent)


"It was good to reflect on both before and after the activity to see what we knew and how we felt before starting it, to then see how we what we learnt and felt afterwards. I thought this made me more reflective of my creativity and helped me to improve my attitudes  being creative and using drama."(Trainee teacher)


Please watch the videos of our International Conference and one of our Multiplier Events to find out more about the work.

For further information, please contact us.

bottom of page