Little Architect, the new AA Visiting School Programme, is preparing lessons for the next school year and contacting primary schools in and out of London. During July, our aim is to summarize and explain to you, the objectives that we achieve during our in-school lessons. Stephanie Taylor, a year four teacher, from Hugh Myddelton School penned a review after the completion of our project. It was developed during Geography lessons and the topic was “Your local area”.
We designed an activity called “Your future local area” working in partnership with two teachers Stephanie Taylor and Simon Evans. Here is the fantastic review:
“The involvement was over 3 sessions with two Year 4 classes with children with a range of abilities, including a child with significant visual impairment.
Our first session was a visit around the local area following a short introduction about features of buildings, encouraging the children to look for the details. Lola (Dolores Victoria Ruiz Garrido, the programme director) was fantastic in leading this activity, challenging children to find interesting motifs in a familiar environment. Having the sessions firmly rooted in the area the children are familiar with was very effective. The children enjoyed this greatly and were activly engaged and excited to find new and different perspectives on their environment.
The second session took the information and images gathered on our local area walk, and then older images were incorporated in an accessible visual format to identify changes in the local area and why the buildings have changed. Giving the children a broader perspective on their area, and an understanding that our world is not static. The children were then encouraged to think of what they would change if they could. There was plenty of opportunities for the children to develop their understanding both by discussion with their peers and with the expert input from the “Little Architect” tutor.
The third session built further on this idea of change and the Little Architect presentation shared images and information on a range of real, and concept buildings which really engaged the children’s creativity. The ideas of sustainability and the use of renewable energy were very clear and the children took these ideas and utilised the inspiration from Lola to design creative and ‘green’ buildings that could shape their local area in the future.
The three sessions worked well as a progressive theme and the children were fully engaged and inspired. Their creations were far more complex and thoughtful than I anticipated and this is due in the main to the inspirational images and knowledge that Little Architect built up over the sessions. This work has helped the children to become more aware of the environmental impact of architecture and possibly even begun to shape the future. The children are much more proactive with regards to recycling and energy consumption. Another important thing, is that the children were able to see and experience a different perspective on their area and hopefully begin to have ambitions for the future that are more varied than before.
The children and I are very thankful that we were involved in the project and we are justifiably proud of the designs that were created, this would not have been possible without “Little Architect”. I hope that many other children get to experience this project, it was fantastic.
Many thanks. Stephanie Taylor. Year 4 teacher and ICT leader. Hugh Myddelton Primary School. Islington. London
It was our pleasure to work in Hugh Myddelton School and its creative students!