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Primary Parliament explores a Healthy City

Over the past week, 80 pupils from 18 schools across Nottingham came together, representing their schools as Primary Parliamentarians to discuss the notion of 'healthy city'.

Pupils began by exploring what we mean by 'healthy' and thinking about all the different things that word means: being fit and active, eating nourishing food, making good choices about fast food and sweets, having positive relationships at home and at school, being able to share how we're feeling, drinking water, getting enough sleep, breathing clean air, living amongst nature and wildlife and lots more!

Then pupils heard from two health experts: Scarlett Fountain, a researcher at Nottingham Trent University who's doing a project about how families can be healthy together, and Jenn Burton from Nottingham City Council, who's working on a plan for how people in Nottingham can live healthier lives.

Next it was over to the pupils to go and do their own research! They focused on key areas of 'healthy' that they thought were especially important and created a table to capture their observations. On Tuesday, pupils went out into the Old Market Square and observed people meeting friends, the range of food outlets, lots of methods of active travel; on Wednesday, pupils went for a walk along the canal and along Station Street and observed greenery and wildlife, people smoking and lots of examples of vibrant creative culture; and on Thursday, pupils went out into their school grounds and observed the different types of play equipment they had and ways they're supported to keep their bodies strong and fit.

Then it was time for preparing presentations in mixed school groups and the rooms were buzzing with creativity! At the end of the session, we were joined by Eky Ghansah and Councillor Angela Kandola, who were blown away not only by the colourful posters, acrostic poems and role plays but also by the new ideas, teamwork, communication skills and confidence of the Primary Parliamentarians. Many of the children's observations, thoughts and solutions will be fed into the work of the City Council as it develops new strategies for helping Nottingham become a healthy city, and especially a healthy city for children to live in.

Special mentions must go to:

- The group of year 2 pupils who joined Primary Parliament for the first time and more than held their own amongst the older children

- The group who created and performed 'The Story of the Three Brothers', a comedic yet meaningful tale of healthy living, exercise and the power of helping one another

And that brings us to the end of another year of Primary Parliament! A huge thank you to all the volunteers and partners who've supported the initiative this year! We wish all the year 6s who were representing their schools for a final time all the best as they move up to new schools in September, and we'll be back in the Autumn term with more Primary Parliament...

If you'd like your school (Nottingham City only) to be involved in Primary Parliament, please get in touch.


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