Tuesday 10 September 2019

Project 101: Politics

When the mother of parliaments is having its first home education day, in the middle of the Prime Minister proroguing parliament, it would be churlish not to have politics as the week's project!

We started the week with the usual videos, readings and discussions about parliament: how it works, who can vote, and (most importantly) what laws children would vote for if they could vote.
Some reading material...
The big event of the week, however, was the visit to the Houses of Parliament. Obviously a visit to the Houses of Parliament would have be noteworthy enough in any week, but with a showdown between the government and parliament and protesters on the street, we began to worry whether the day would be cancelled. As it was, it all went ahead without a hitch - although this did mean it was necessary to give the children a potted history of Brexit from the financial crash of 2008 to the election of 2017 and why the PM's got a problem of parliamentary arithmetic.
UK Parliament
The visit was split broadly into two halves: the first half in the education centre was learning how elections work and how laws are made; and the second half was the tour of parliament. Unfortunately you're not allowed to take pictures in the Lords and Commons, but the children nonetheless got to see a quiet House of Commons as Phil Wilson discussed a fenland project in County Durham, and a bustling House of Lords as the Brexit legislation was discussed there. The children almost got to see their local MP, Shailesh Vara, at the end, but he was stuck in a meeting so his assistant came along instead. It probably didn't matter anyway, as it was always going to be a long shot that they would be future Conservative voters.

Solomon announced on the way back that he was a bit like Boris Johnson, as he doesn't always know what to do...but he is only six and not in charge of a country, so that's OK.

Next week's project: China.

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