We believe that every school should be full of brave and curious individuals, who brim with enthusiasm and who value every contribution. We want students and teachers to feel that not always knowing where they will end up is something to celebrate. Thinking Kits are a new initiative from The House of Fairy Tales aimed at letting schools achieve just that. The kits offer teachers everything they need to run an immersive project in their own classrooms. They will charge up students with wonder and make space for open ended responses in our increasingly outcomes-focused education system.
The Great Turkish Tulip Challenge
Our first Thinking Kit is The Great Turkish Tulip Challenge and is all about making space for the capacities of being "brave and curious" in the classroom. We are collaborating closely with a group of brilliant primary school teachers in County Durham and associate artists Tim Godwin, Josh Knowles and Oliver Wallace, to create the story of the Museum of Brave and Curious and its mysterious curator: Norma. Twelve schools and six hundred students are currently participating in a combination of teacher training, distance learning elements, close email and telephone communication and two days of "curriculum liberation" centred on a beautiful book - the Thinklopedia.
Why "Brave and Curious"?
In a nutshell the combination of these capacities allows us to begin something we think is valuable without knowing exactly how it will end up, and is essential to finding new responses, passions, collaborations and solutions. We are entering a future in which automation will radically transform the field of human endeavour. If our children are going to successfully navigate that and fill their lives with prosperity they will need to:
Brave enough to start without knowing what will happen. Brave enough to choose from endless choices. Brave enough to share what they have done.
Curious enough to wonder what it could possibly be. Curious enough to discover as they go. Curious enough to look beyond the surface.
By collaborating closely with "Pioneer Teachers" from each involved school we, as an organisation, are doing some incredible learning. This will mean we can confidently go on to make the project available to more schools in a more streamlined way. Currently there are 600 students involved but eventually the aim is to create a national offer and see schools across the country developing their culture of Brave and Curious learners and teachers. Here is a video we made after our teacher training day to tell the schools what was coming next…