Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Discovering Infrastructure

We have been using infrastructure for our latest project. Discovering everything that makes the country tick over seamlessly.

Olivia kicked off the project by looking at transport, she was quite amused at penny farthings and said she can see why they never took off, although they did look fun.

We have a visit to the recycling centre planned in September and a trip to Fiddlers ferry arranged in November to look at the coal fired power plant, during October we are visiting Muncaster Castle so we will try to fit in a visit to Sellafield whilst we are over that way.

We found this great interactive map (click on the link below to see it in action) that shows the infrastructure of Greater Manchester so they learned  lot about our local infrastructure.

We have decided to make a wall mural with the different parts of infrastructure that we choose to look at, so far we have transport, recycling and power and utilities to go onto our wall mural. 

We took a trip to M24 Art Supplies in Middleton to find some scrap art materials that we could use to create our mural, what a lovely place, the people are friendly and very helpful and they have crafty workshops during holidays where the children can make and take things along a themed line.

We are comparing and contrasting UK infrastructure with other countries too, looking at less developed countries and understanding why this may be.

This is another long term project that we will incorporate some maths into as well as history and some science and other cross curricular topics.

Considering I just wanted to work on their writing skills this has turned out to be much more so far.

One example is graphs, we are looking at the types of vehicles on the roads, counting as we go on our road trips, to then put into different graphs and turn that into a piece of art, I loved when we did the pi Skyline building art work so something on those lines will be equally as much fun, here is a video below of how to do it.

We have started to work on some poetry, for this we are looking at the different types of poems with the theme of Infrastructure, for example limericks and acrostic poems, looking at some already created and making our own silly poems.

The children have enjoyed learning about buildings and the changes they go through and why, learning how infrastructure changes over time and what differences these changes have made to peoples lives, how some fight back against change and how some changes have discourse attached.

We are very much looking forwards to the heritage open day and will make sure we take advantage of places we wouldn't normally get to go to. Looking at how churches played an important part in UK infrastructure and how they are used today for tourist attractions so still play an important role in our infrastructure.

The point of this exercise is to look at things in a different way and see the worth in things that we would normally take for granted but are in fact an integral part of our lives using writing practice, research practice, maths, history and other subjects to cover their basic literary and maths skills.

Working on our writing and imagination skills and learning about how these things work and what kinds of jobs people do whilst looking after our infrastructure, the science and the history, there is so much to learn from this topic of infrastructure, it is an exciting topic to cover and I am sure it will expand as we go along, I have already decided to add in a visit to the medical museum and the broadcasting museum to our list of places to visit to look at the medical side of our infrastructure and communications infrastructure, it is a topic that can expand and grow over the next year!

The great thing about using this topic is that the kids have been very proactive putting their own ideas into the mix and doing their own suggestions, for example Olivia wanted to find out about transport and wondered where the first bike began and this lead to her discovering the penny farthing she then suggested making an art piece of a penny farthing. So this is wonderful that the kids are taking the lead in what and how they are learning.

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