An award winning teaching resource
Healthy Places, Healthy Children
CategoryChild health and wellbeing
Proof of concept
An innovative teaching resource
This award was received for Healthy Places, Healthy Children, a teaching resource designed to introduce planning to children aged 8-11 years old. The resource gave them an opportunity to share their views and ideas on how to make local neighbourhoods more child and people friendly. It is made up of six units and is designed to be delivered over a flexible period of time.
- The tool helps to engage children in planning at both the plan making and project development stage.
- The resource supports delivery of the Northern Ireland Curriculum for Key Stage 2
- The tool provides opportunities to introduce planning as a profession and career option to pupils.
Gaining insight into children's experience
How/why did the project benefit the public?
In Belfast, 15% of the population is aged 13 or under, but there are no official processes to engage them in decision making processes. This resource provides a way to gain an insight into children’s experience presented in their own words. It also highlights new information about how space is used, that is not regularly available or known to adults.
The proposals developed in the pilot phase of the resource have been shared with decision makers in Belfast, and a number have been developed in partnership with a range of statutory sector partners. The evidence has also gone on to inspire a new interest in children within the built environment sector in Belfast and Northern Ireland.
What were local planners hoping to achieve on the project?
- To introduce planning as a career option to pupils.
- To give children an opportunity to share their views and ideas on how to make local neighbourhoods more child and people friendly.
- To support the delivery of the Northern Ireland Curriculum for Key Stage 2.
- To gather evidence from a sizable, but often little heard from population group.
- To support the development of relationships between planners and children.
Justifying the need
How were local planners essential to the project's success?
Planners advised on the content of this resource throughout the process, ensuring that focus was kept on the key concepts of the resource and importantly making sure the format of the final proposal was relevant to planning.
Their insight was crucial to ensure that the key elements of a high-quality planning proposal could be integrated into the resource and in particular the final project planning guidance.
The collaboration with planners gave the project owners insight into the realities and priorities of planning authorities, including understanding approaches to engaging stakeholders.