Pupil from Local Junior School Wins Drawing Competition Judged by Gruffalo Illustrator, Axel Scheffler
A student at a school in Radlett, Hertfordshire, has won the National Thank a Teacher Day’s #HowWillYouSayThankYou Drawing Competition, judged by Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler, beating out entries from across the UK. Elizabeth from Fair Field Junior School drew a picture of her favourite teacher that was judged to be the best in the nation by the renowned illustrator.
The #HowWillYouSayThankYou Drawing Competition, sponsored by Parentkind, was among several competitions run by National Thank a Teacher Day in the lead up to celebrations on June 23, and the winners were announced last week. The Drawing Competition asked pupils and students in the UK to create a drawing or painting of their favourite teacher. To enter, they simply had to upload a video or photo of their artwork and send a free thank you message via the Thank a Teacher website.
Elizabeth’s artwork will feature on Thank a Teacher’s end of year card and she will also receive an Axel Scheffler original artwork. As an added bonus, Elizabeth also received a virtual congratulations message from Axel himself which was published on Twitter.
The Thank a Teacher campaign is a year-around effort to draw attention to the amazing work of
teachers, schools and support staff across the UK, culminating with Thank a Teacher day. Anyone can send a card; children, students, parents, grandparents and colleagues can all say thank you. The Thank a Teacher campaign recognises all staff working in schools; school leaders, teachers, teaching assistants, and all support staff such as lunchtime supervisors, caretakers and cleaners.
This year’s Thank a Teacher Day on June 23 was a huge success, with key figures including Boris Johnson, Gavin Williamson, David Walliams, Pixie Lott, Dame Arlene Philips, Shaun the Sheep and more tweeting their support.
Elizabeth’s Mum, Vicky, said:
“What a fantastic surprise – we are thrilled for Elizabeth! She loves drawing & and was ecstatic at the idea that Mr Axel Scheffler picked out her art work.”
Catherine Goodwin, Head of School at Fair Field Junior School said:
“Everyone at Fair Field is simply delighted that Elizabeth has scooped such a fantastic prize for her artwork of Miss R Gray. To win one of Axel Scheffler’s original drawings is such a marvellous achievement as he is such a well-known and talented illustrator! We are really pleased we prompted the competition to the children!”
John Jolly, CEO of Parentkind, said:
“We were delighted to sponsor the #HowWillYouSayThankYou Drawing Competition, and we can’t wait to see Elizabeth’s brilliant portrait of her teacher featured on Thank a Teacher’s end of year card.
“A strong home and school partnership is vital to the success of every child’s education, and parents and teachers work tirelessly all year round to ensure children reach their potential and get the best possible start in life. Our recent research with the Teaching Awards Trust found that more than two out of three parents have more respect for the work that teachers do following their experience of remote learning, and we are seeing signs that the pandemic has reinforced that crucial home and school partnership. It’s one reason why families throughout the country love the Thank a Teacher campaign. A simple message to convey their gratitude for the difference our teachers make to children’s lives is such a wonderful and rewarding idea, and we encourage everyone with a special teacher in their lives to take part.”
Axel Scheffler, Illustrator of The Gruffalo, said:
“I had the honour and pleasure of judging the Thank a Teacher Drawing Competition. It was really hard to narrow it down as we had such wonderful entries, but Elizabeth’s picture was a very original composition. I loved the confetti rain and golden cup that the teacher gets – it shows that this pupil really loves her teacher. So, congratulations to Elizabeth, and thank you to everyone who entered!”
Note to Editors
About Thank a Teacher Day
The Thank a Teacher Campaign is run by The Teaching Awards Trust which was established in 1998 by Lord David Puttnam CBE, to celebrate and recognise excellence in education.
Every year on National Thank A Teacher Day schools, colleges, teachers and support staff are celebrated across the country and the Silver Winners of the Pearson National Teaching Awards are announced.
Anyone can send a card to any member of staff working in UK schools and colleges; school leaders, teachers, teaching assistants, and all support staff such as lunchtime supervisors, caretakers and cleaners. You can even send your card to the whole school/college. Thank A Teacher is open all year round.
Parentkind is the largest network of PTA fundraisers in the UK. We bring specialist fundraising support and advice to parent volunteers so that every school can benefit from a successful PTA. Our 13,000 PTA members raise over £120+ million per year, placing us alongside some of the largest charities in the UK. As a national charity, Parentkind, give those with a parenting role a voice in education. We invest substantial resources in representing parent views on their child’s learning to local, regional and national governments and agencies because evidence tells parental participation in education benefits all children in all schools and society as a whole.
The Parentkind journey started in 1956 by a group of pioneer parents who were passionate about parent involvement in their child’s learning but felt that they needed a voice at national as well as local level. Therefore, from PTAs on the ground forming regional federations, the national association of PTAs was born.
Nicholas Gillet was the first chair of the National Council of Parent Teacher Associations (NCPTA), as it was then called, and his vision was that parents should not only have a local role and a voice in their child’s school but also at a national level in education policy.
Today family life is very different to 65 years ago and so is the education system. We have many different types of family structures and circumstances (the nuclear family, single parents, or two working parents), much more disparate community support and a multitude of care arrangements for children around school. However, the vision remains the same; parents should not only have a local role and a voice in their child’s school but also at a national level in education policy.