Pupils dream up ways to celebrate their home parish

All the winners with councillors Ken Wood and Roger Clarke
All the winners with councillors Ken Wood and Roger Clarke

INNOVATIVE ideas to celebrate their home parish were created by year-seven pupils for a school project.

The results were presented to councillors at Steyning Grammar School, with the best ideas winning prizes.

The idea for Southwick and Shoreham was to have a festival day featuring a children's parade and village games

The idea for Southwick and Shoreham was to have a festival day featuring a children's parade and village games

Pupils were asked to ‘celebrate the parish they live in’ by coming up with ideas for special events.

Head teacher Nick Wergan said: “Project-based learning underlines our commitment to embedding the key skills for success into our students’ curriculum alongside subject-based learning.

“It is also an excellent opportunity to work with our local community, very directly in this instance with all our catchment parishes, following on from our collaborative curriculum work with Steyning Strikers and Steyning Downland Scheme.”

Students selected the best pieces of work for the presentations then councillors representing the various parishes judged the winners.

Freya Taylor-Lester won the overall first prize for her idea to capture a day in the life of Henfield on video.

Ben Neal and Maisie Munns were joint second. Ben’s event, The Big Comparison, impressed judges with its ‘now and then’ element, giving residents the chance to add in their own pictures. Maise’s Upper Beeding mosaic demonstrated a high quality of research and thought given to what would be good in the community.

Cerys Nicks received third prize with her popular idea for Lancing movies.

The councillors said the range of ideas were fantastic, including a Bramber scavenger hunt, La Tour de Steyning, an Upper Beeding woodland sculpture, a welcome sign for Small Dole and celebrating St Cupcakes Day, a good play on St Cuthman.

Student Jodie Tyler, who had the idea for an Upper Beeding tea and walk, said: “I enjoyed being able to decide my own ideas for a celebration on where I lived.

“I did a little bit of research each day at school during lesson times and I really enjoyed it.”

Catherine Bowlan, an Upper Beeding parish councillor, said: “We were very impressed with Jodie and her knowledge and research on our parish. She had a lovely idea for a tea party in the village hall.

“We have invited all students to take part and run their idea at the Upper Beeding Primary School summer fête, which is a great opportunity for students from this parish.”

This project began with a talk by school governor Jan Hobson and head of key stage four Lindsay Thompson, who explained the thinking behind the schools own 400th celebration.

Michelle Stokes, Steyning Grammar School, Project Based Learning teacher said: “Students were asked to present their research in a way that was creative and interesting with a display for councillors to judge.

“Students were asked to include a cost analysis and conduct some market research into the viability of their proposals.

“Pupils worked individually as well as in teams, coming together in parish groups to discuss and compare their research and critique each others work.”

She said the project had really excited the students and giving them the chance to interact with parish council representatives had been an important part of the project.

“To have a real and respected audience to give some feedback on the projects has been a valuable part of the experience for our students,” she added.

“The councillors showed a great deal of interest in the students’ work and were very rigorous in their judging, which has made the experience very worthwhile, and is an important part of their learning.”