On Friday I attended a Go Givers session with some year 5 students at St Ignatius Primary School in Tottenham. I was at the session with Guardian journalist Fran Abrams who is writing a piece about the class’s anti-knife crime campaign, which was initiated through Go Givers.
First the class demonstrated several real-life scenarios and acted out the different choices they could take in each instance. This was followed by a talk from Alvin the Outreach Worker at the local church. He talked to the class about the choices he had made in his life, and was successful in relating his life choices to the choices the pupils have to make for themselves now, and the ones they may go on to make in the future.
This was followed by a lively discussion where the pupils talked about knife crime in their community, and how it has impacted on their lives and the lives of people they know. They talked about the motivations for carrying a knife and the prevention of this behaviour, and how they felt they could positively influence their peers. I was impressed with how knowledgeable these young people were and the maturity and passion with which they were able to tackle the issues around knife crime.
I was thrilled when Fran asked whether they felt that these kinds of issues should be tackled in primary classrooms and almost every student in the classroom jumped up to answer. It seemed every student felt that, yes, it was important for young people to discuss these issues because they were aware that knife crime happens in their community and they felt they could make a difference. I can’t wait to see Fran’s piece in print in a few weeks!
Go Givers is our flagship programme for primary schools to develop caring, concerned citizens with the confidence and skills to make a difference to their communities, both local and global.
Go Givers resources are usually used in citizenship education classes, but this subject is not currently statutory for primary students. The Democratic Life campaign, of which the Citizenship Foundation is a member, is working to change this.