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School of Life - "Age is just a Number"
The ‘School of Life’ is a programme to promote skills exchanges between young and older people. We have suggested that older people may teach young people to achieve things which they are not strictly taught in school, or perhaps at home. These things may include learning how to put a shelf up, how to budget, how to grow vegetables and how to tinker with a car. In return, young people may teach older people how to use a mobile phone, use eBay, keep fit using a Nintendo Wii and how to use a digital camera. Both age groups can share their hobbies, fishing, sport, music, drama, dancing and crafts for example.
Recent School of Life activities
The School of Life project recently stepped in to add some extra “va va voom” to an outdoor classroom created from a piece of waste ground at Roade Primary School by SN Homes and VINCI Facilities.
The school children designed a colourful wall mural with an underwater theme, which volunteer project artist Shashi Chana transferred to the wall. With the teachers and volunteers help, the children filled the various fish outlines with paint, being careful to keep within the lines. Model eyes and shells were added later to give the wall a 3-D effect.
Amanda Harris, School of Life project coordinator, said “It was very heart-warming when the children came and thanked everyone for their help. Everyone enjoyed the day and were amazed to see such great results in such a short space of time.”
This event brought younger and older people together and the wall mural will benefit generations to come.
During September was i-Tea and biscuits week School of Life celebrated in Towcester Library. This event was another successful intergenerational activity. The day gave a great opportunity for the under 25’s to volunteer in their community and share their IT skills with the over 50’s.
A flip camera kindly donated by BT for this event was won in a prize draw by Nic a Sponne School Student who volunteered all day to help pass on IT skills to people over 50. The future plan is that Nic and a few other volunteers will continue to run a drop in session at the Towcester library on a regular basis. Many visitors on the day said how much they had learnt working one to one on their specific questions and how they hope to have more session in the future.
Getting online is an important way that people can keep in contact with friends and family, receive local and national information and keep up to date. It can be frustrating when you can’t do something on the computer and other technology, such as mobile phones. Our younger generation enjoy so much sharing their knowledge with others and it was a joy to see how much everybody benefited.
This is a fantastic opportunity to get involved in an important and exiting project affecting us all. Whether you have regular time to volunteer, just a one off contribution or simply for more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. (School of life support worker for South Northamptonshire)
See the side bar for the latest opportunities to get involved. Contact Amanda if you are interested.
Download the School of Life leaflet here
Volunteers needed for upcoming activities