The UK’s first nationwide architectural learning programme for schoolchildren is launched by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) this week.
The free of charge programme partners schools with RIBA Architecture Ambassadors, who volunteer their time to deliver curriculum-linked workshops for children, aged 4-18.
The RIBA’s National Schools Programme strives to help children explore and understand the built environment – its impact on people and communities; how it is shaped and developed; and why good design is important.
Architecture is not a subject that is taught as part of the school curriculum. The aim of the programme is to foster an inspired, confident and knowledgeable generation that understands the impact and importance of architecture.
The programme launch follows a successful pilot phase that engaged 18,000 young people, in over 200 schools across England. The pilot was delivered by 349 Architecture Ambassadors from 170 architecture practices.
Speaking about the programme, RIBA President Ben Derbyshire said, “The huge enthusiasm and commitment of the individual architects and their practices in giving their time to make this programme possible is impressive. We are proud that our pilot project has already reached 18,000 young people, all over the country, and we look forward to inspiring thousands more.”
A teacher that took part in the pilot phase, Canan Ahmet, at Rokesly Junior School said: “The RIBA National Schools Programme is run by a team of passionate, professional, creative and inspiring individuals who care about architecture as well as the children. Working with a team of talented architects, as well as RIBA, has ensured that our children are able to develop life skills, such as team work, solving a brief, problem solving and communication. The programme raises aspirations and creates potential careers pathways for some architects of tomorrow.”