Colton R, Giles M, Cobb H & Jones S (2013) Open Air Learning: schools, education and the Whitworth Park Community, Archaeology and History Project. Journal of Victorian Culture Online. http://jvc.oup.com/2013/03/26/open-air-learning-schools-education-and-the-whitworth-park-community-archaeology-and-history-project/
First paragraph: Historic parks have always been sites of education for children: learning the names of plants and trees, games to play, how to behave well in the company of others. These were key motives for Victorian and Edwardian philanthropists, keen to improve the social, moral and physical wellbeing of urban communities. Arguably, many of these values are still important today, building on the educational principle that children learn best by doing, and that ‘open-air learning’ (espoused by Rousseau and his contemporaries) brought many benefits to all classes. The school component of the Whitworth Park project seeks to use the archaeological heritage of such spaces to re-engage children in the history of their local environment, hoping to rejuvenate Parks as contemporary ‘open air’ classrooms.
Heritage Lottery; Parks; Open Spaces; Public Engagement; Community heritage
Journal of Victorian Culture Online