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Part 2 – Announcing the 2023 Arts in Education Portal Documentation Award Recipients

Image credit: Dream Train, Cliodhna Noonan

The Portal Team are delighted to announce the second of the two recipients of the 2023 Arts in Education Portal Documentation Award. We are very excited to be working with each recipient in the coming months to document their projects. These projects will be showcased on the portal as the documentation progresses.


The BA in Early Childhood Education and Care programme at Atlantic Technological University ( ATU) Galway and Mayo campuses were delighted to be awarded an Artist in Residence funded by the Arts Council, to work with the students undertaking the BA in Early Childhood Education and Care programme.

The Arts project SCEALTA (Stories, Curiosity, Engagement, Active learning, Language, Theatre, Aistear) was devised as an extension of the Artist in Residence project. This project is based in Tuam Community Childcare Centre which is owned and managed by Western Traveller and Intercultural Development (WTID) group. The provocation for this project is the Community preschool School Bus. The preschool children in Tuam community preschool are collected each morning and return to their homes, families, and extended families after the preschool session on the school bus.

The second preschool which is part of this project Whiz Kids, is a private preschool. Going on a bus journey is a treat or an adventure for these children, usually associated with an outing. As part of the arts project, the children from Whiz Kids preschool travel on the bus to the Tuam Community Childcare Centre, where all of the children come together to actively participate in the project. The children’s social and cultural context is celebrated through this creative experience of stories, puppetry and theatre using the school bus to take children on real and imaginary journeys, sharing stories, songs, engaging in experiential learning through media, art, clay.

Early Years Educator: Louise O’Shaughnessy
Louise O’Shaughnessy is the Manager at Tuam Community Childcare Centre, For Western Traveller Intercultural Development Group. Louise is also in year three of the BA in Early Childhood Education and Care at Atlantic Technological University Galway. Louise believes in the importance and value of supporting young children’s identity and belonging in the early years setting in partnership with parents and families.

Early Years Educator: Sandra Mills
Sandra Mills is an Early Childhood Educator at Tuam Community Childcare Centre. Sandra is currently pursuing a Degree in Early Childhood Education and Care in Atlantic Technological University Galway. She has worked in the early years sector for over 12 years and is deeply committed in encouraging children to become self-directed learners and establishing a warm safe and welcoming early years environment. 

Early Years Educator: Paula O’Reilly
Paula O’Reilly is an Early Years Educator at Wiz Kidz preschool and afterschool service Tuam. Paula is in year three of the BA Early Childhood Education and Care at Atlantic Technological University Galway. She is passionate about play and recognises children’s right to play and playful early learning experiences which supports their curiosity, imagination and creativity.

Artist: Cliodhna Noonan
Cliodhna Noonan is The Arts Council ATU Artist in Residence. Cliodhna is an early years arts creator, producer and programmer for creative arts events with children and families aged 0-6 years. Cliodhna writes, develops and performs her own work for young children age 0-6 years, she is a member of Smallsize EU network association and an active member of TYAI.




Songwriting and Performance

School Level

Early Years