Would-be reporters learn the art of team-building

A group of young people working with Leading Link at KEVI in preparation for taking part in the BBC School report Scheme.
A group of young people working with Leading Link at KEVI in preparation for taking part in the BBC School report Scheme.

BUDDING reporters have received a fun introduction to a major project that culminates next year.

The Three Rivers Learning Trust in Morpeth has signed up to the BBC News School Report as part of a long-term creative transition scheme for the town’s middle and high schools.

Invited Year 6 students have been enjoying a week of team and relationship building activities with the support of King Edward VI School, which was facilitated by Bedlington-based Leading Link and their Youth Ambassadors.

It began at the BBC studios in Newcastle to give the children an insight into all aspects of journalism, followed by a visit to the Discovery Museum with a celebration of North East creativity.

The week continued with a series of team-building games, which included a Total Wipeout challenge, traditional tug of war, ten-legged races, parachute games, dodgeball and more.

Lots of fun was had at a gunge day, in which the pupils from Chantry and Newminster Middle Schools and Technology Colleges took part in a nightline challenge, attempted to climb the Cyclone slide, which involved flour, eggs, washing-up liquid and jam, and the event was rounded off with a good old-fashioned water fight.

Kelsey, 11, of Newminster, said: “It was extraordinary – definitely one of the funniest days of my life.”

The young people also worked with local artist Tony Murray to create a Modrock freeze of Morpeth’s major landmarks, which involved taking photographs across the town and then transforming their pictures into a massive 3-D relief montage which will be on show at their own schools before being displayed at KEVI.

It culminated with a barbecue for parents and families. They were involved in an afternoon of family fun, with grass skiing, a drain pipe dash, space hopper racing and a giant Jenga competition.

Work Related Learning Co-ordinator for KEVI Katrina Mackay said: “Although the project is primarily about the BBC News School Report, the aim was to bring the young people together for a week to introduce them to the school and each other in a fun environment.

“They have taken skills such as problem solving and listening to each other, which can be easily transferred to when they become young journalists after the summer holidays.”

“The fact that they’ve also met new friends and had a lot of fun means this week has been more successful than we could have hoped for.”

The students will now come together again in September to begin their BBC School Report training and prepare for their News Reporting Day next March.

This involves putting together their own news bulletin which will be directly linked to the BBC and be featured on a special website.