Last year Covid restrictions meant that many of the usual festivities that take place in schools over the Christmas period had to be abandoned in December 2020. However, the KS2 Young Leaders at St Michael’s CE Primary in St Albans were determined to find a way that they could still bring the Christmas spirit to their village and beyond.
The Year 6 pupils decided that as the school couldn’t invite parents and the local community in to watch the traditional Nativity play, instead they would design and create a QR code Nativity trail for people to follow outside.
“My favourite thing was working with my friends and seeing all the people's [public] faces light up”
Year 6 pupil
Pupils co-ordinated the project by communicating with all teachers and requesting help from every child in the school to ensure that everyone was involved and made a contribution. They were split into 8 groups to co-ordinate the creation of 8 separate stations on the Nativity trail. Each group created a poster which included 4 QR codes which could be scanned by a Smart device. The pupils decided what should be included on each station and how it should be displayed. They agreed on 4 categories:
1. An audio recording of the Year 6 children reading 8 parts of the Nativity story.
2. An audio recording of a chosen year group singing a Christmas carol linked to the nativity reading.
3. A suggested craft activity linked to the nativity reading, with a picture of an example created by the chosen year group.
4. A suggested Christmas recipe created by the Year 6 group.
Each group designed their own poster, choosing to use a range of different media to give the trail a personal touch. Once the trail had been set up, a message prepared by the children was sent to all families in the school community to let them know that the trail would be available to enjoy over the Christmas period.
After the holiday, the QR codes were analysed, and the pupils found out that the trail had been scanned by members of the public up to 160 times!
“[I will always remember] helping make people who may be left lonely through Covid-19 happier”
Year 6 pupil
Taking part in the Young Leaders Award gave the pupils an increased sense of responsibility and greater understanding of the positive impact they can have on the local and wider community, especially during the unique challenges brought about by the global pandemic. Pupils also developed their listening skills and explored how to disagree politely when encountering different opinions while planning and implementing their ideas.
“There was an over whelming sense of community across the class and the pupils were very keen to work together to make a difference. They had a real sense of achievement knowing that so many people had enjoyed the trail they had worked hard to create.”