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IBCC hits 20,000 children milestone through its education programmes


12/4/2023 2:09:27 PM


3 mins read

AN IMPRESSIVE 20,000 children have been put through the International Bomber Command Centre’s education programmes.

The sessions, delivered by the IBCC’s dedicated learning officers and team of award-winning volunteers, teach the fascinating history of Bomber Command’s personnel through firsthand accounts, artefacts, and state-of-the-art interactive displays. 

This allows children of all ages to engage with the history in an accessible but thought-provoking way. Additionally, a ’10 Things to do at the IBCC’ guide has also been produced to help families explore the inside and outside of the Centre at their own pace while prompting conversations about Remembrance, Recognition and Reconciliation. 

Janine Smithson, IBCC learning officer, said: “It is so important that children are aware of Britain’s past, and we hope that we can inspire and spark their curiosity to learn even more about WWII after they leave us. This period of history especially is important for children to learn about as those with the last living memory of this time period will unfortunately soon no longer be with us. 

“On top of the sessions we deliver to schools, scouts and guides, and other youth groups, we’ve also geared the rest of the centre toward promoting learning so those visiting with their family aren’t missing out.  

“We believe a hands-on approach allows the children to discover the past in an exciting way where our materials complement their imaginations in bringing the stories to life. We want them to come away from our centre with a new appreciation of our history, but to have had fun attaining it as well.  

“It’s always rewarding to see those lightbulb moments of discovery when they make connections with the past.” 

The IBCC offers a range of family fun-days for all ages and are also registered with the Duke of Edinburgh Awards allowing young people to volunteer as they achieve their Bronze, Silver or Gold Awards. 

To commemorate its hard work in developing an excellent quality of education delivery, the IBCC was also recently awarded the prestigious Sandford Award for Heritage Education 2023. 

To further develop and improve its educational offering and engagement with schools, the IBCC has now expanded its learning officer team with a former primary school teacher, Leah Deen. Additionally, the IBCC is currently fundraising for a new dedicated learning space separate from the main building that will enable the team to teach a more encompassing program that extends the range of human stories behind Bomber Command. 

Nicky van der Drift, chief executive of the International Bomber Command Centre, said: “Hitting the milestone 20,000 children through our doors to learn is an amazing achievement and testament to the team we have here who take immense pride in educating the next generation. If we’ve sparked a lifelong passion for history in even one of those children, then I consider it a success, and we’re now look forward to expanding and improving our offering further.” 

The International Bomber Command Centre is open from 9:30am-4pm Tuesday to Sunday, with last entry to the Exhibition at 3pm. For more information about the centre, or to book tickets and donate, please visit internationalbcc.co.uk. Alternatively, to get in touch with the IBCC learning team, contact learning@internationalbcc.co.uk

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