Filming Road Trip
17 May 2022

Filming Road Trip

Last week Kim and Fiona embarked on a mini road trip taking in schools from Newcastle West in Durgarvan all the way up to Louth with many drop in’s along the way. In true Thelma and Louise style, the pair spent three days visiting different schools across the country meeting with teachers and students to film them with their B!G Idea materials and to see The B!G Idea in action in the classroom.

The key takeaway from interviewing students and teachers was that the B!G Idea is making an impression with them all and that mentor feedback and visibility throughout the programme is a vitally motivating factor for all the students.

Every teacher that Fiona interviewed referenced Mentor feedback as a pivotal point in the programme, with one teacher stating that students couldn’t believe that these ‘real people’ had taken the time to think about their project, invariably meaning that it must be good. One student told her that he checked his Mentors bio’s and their company website just to make sure they were actually real!

The energy in the classroom was bubbling through and one of the key driving factors for students has been that they have ownership of the project. Choosing the brief themselves really resonated with them, they led the research and they connected with the Mentors to create their B!G Idea. When asked about the skills they developed through the programme, creative thinking was the obvious choice but many students also identified an increase in collaboration and communication skills as well. There were lots of comments like, ‘I feel more confident now to share my opinions in a group’ with some going so far as to recognise leadership skills that they never knew they had.

All students had so many different experiences and all of them were very keen to share them. There was one girl who spoke about her positive experience of working through the Mental Health brief. For her, learning how to create a Persona or a Hero for her project helped her to bring her own Mental Health experiences to her project in a ‘safe way’. She said that learning about the experiences of others within her group and the research they discovered helped her to open up. It is so incredible hearing things like this from the actual horse’s mouth and it highlights the softer skills of the creative process that maybe we all underestimate but which clearly need to be considered more often.

For another student, The B!G Idea really challenged his thinking. He claimed not to know much about Climate Change before doing the programme and in his words ‘wasn’t really bothered about it all’ but now after working through the process and learning about it he realises that ‘he has to care and that if he does care that he can change things’. So a massive journey for him where he learned so much and all on his own terms.

The road trip was invaluable. It highlighted all the good that The B!G Idea is bringing to so many and also the positive effect that Mentor input has on their journeys. It was evident that The B!G Idea is engaging young people to be more creative, to be more curious and to work together to activate change.

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