Ricky Martin from CBBC’s Art Ninja is supporting the Shakespeare Portrait Competition for youngsters, ahead of Shakespeare Week.

Primary schools across the country are being supported to inject creativity into the classroom as part of a nationwide programme “using Shakespeare to deepen and enrich the arts experiences of children”.

A spokesman added: “From March 16 to March 22, 2020, more than two million children and their families will be getting creative as part of an exciting art and design-themed programme for Shakespeare Week - the annual national celebration of Shakespeare in primary schools run by independent charity, the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

“The Trust is working with some of the country’s best-loved artists to develop free resources and activities that will enthuse and inspire children to get creative with Shakespeare, including children’s TV presenter Ricky Martin from CBBC’s Art Ninja, Korky Paul, illustrator of the popular Winnie the Witch series, award-winning author and illustrator, Marcia Williams, and Waterstones Children’s Laureate, Cressida Cowell.”

The spokesman added: “New for this year’s celebration is the Shakespeare Portrait Competition, inviting children age 11 and under to create their very own portrait of the Bard for a chance to win fabulous prizes, including having their artwork exhibited at The Lowry and in an online exhibition during Shakespeare Week.”

Jacqueline Green, head of learning and participation at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, said, “In the six years that Shakespeare Week has been running we’ve demonstrated that making Shakespeare fun and accessible to young children can have a positive impact in the development of their imagination, creativity and social skills.

Children have until 31 January 2020 to enter their artwork. Full details are available on the Shakespeare Week website www.shakespeareweek.org.uk/competition/”.