Innovative Children's Heritage Projects Receive Roots And Wings Awards

By 24 Hour Museum Staff | 20 June 2006
a photograph of two adults and several children dressed in wartime gear including helmets

Ghost Camp was Salford Lads’ and Girls’ Club exploration of World War Two.

Five winning schemes involving children and young people aged between 7 and 16 in hands-on heritage projects in the UK have received Roots and Wings Awards.

The awards, which are organised by Curiosity & Imagination, the national network for practitioners dedicated to inspiring children's exploration of the world around them, were hosted by TV presenter Loyd Grossman at a ceremony in London on June 20 2006.

“Discovering and learning about their heritage can be a source of great delight and fascination for young people,” said Loyd. “In finding out about their own connection to past events, people and societies, the Roots and Wings winners have been involved in an important search for their past and their community.”

“Again this year, we’ve seen some outstanding work and I can’t help but admire and congratulate them all.”

a photograph of a young person with long hair looking through a telescope

The Wild Britain project helped children understand the problems facing British wildlife today.

Winners ranged from school projects to individual schemes. In Sheffield, the Eventus project saw a group of 10-15-year olds creatively combine old photos and oral histories with digital animations to tell the story of their local area Beighton. You can view the results on a website www.ourbeighton.org.uk.

Other projects involved pupils from Newlyn East Primary School near Truro who created a Tudor garden within the National Trust’s Elizabethan Manor House at Trerice, Cornwall.

In Andover, 16-year old Simon Frogley set out on a one-man mission to help children understand the problems facing British wildlife today. His Wild Britain project includes a website, www.wildinbritain.co.uk as well as workshops and other events.

A diverse panel of representatives from government, national newspapers, funders and heritage organisations judged the entries, whilst funding for this year’s event came from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.

a photograph of a group of children stood in squares which have been narked out in a garden

Newlyn East Primary School near Truro who created a Tudor garden within the National Trust’s Elizabethan Manor House at Trerice, Cornwall.

"Learning about heritage plays a vital role in helping children to make sense of the world around them,” said Anne Longfield, Chief Executive of 4Children, the organisation that runs Curiosity and Imagination.

“Creatively encouraging children to interact with and examine their local heritage helps them develop a strong sense of identity and deepens their connection with their communities and the wider world.”

“By discovering their ‘roots’, children can gain the understanding and confidence to develop ‘wings’ that allow them to imagine and actively participate in shaping the future,” added Anne.

Further awards went to a scheme called 'Ghost Camp', which was Salford Lads’ and Girls’ Club exploration of World War Two. The resulting project, which can be explored at www.salfordladsclub.org.uk took in a range of activities including drama, workshops and a radio play.

a photograph of a boy holding up a picture of an aeroplane

Children delved into the history behind the Overlord Embroidery through the ‘Stitch in Time’ project.

In Portsmouth the ‘Stitch in Time’ project gave children an opportunity to interpret the Overlord Embroidery at the D-Day Museum. Children improvised and filmed short dramatic sketches, recreating back-stories to some of the scenes commemorated on the embroidery.

An alliance of three organisations - Kids’ Clubs Network, Demos and the Campaign for Learning - lead Curiosity & Imagination. For more information on 4Children visit www.4Children.org.uk

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