Barry Island Primary School to create ‘Story Trail’

Barry Island Primary School were tasked with developing an ICT project that would incorporate children’s work and develop local tourism! Following much deliberation the children at the school formulated a fantastic idea to create a ‘Story Trail’.

The Story Trail will lead ‘tech-tastic’ tourists around Barry Island using their knowledge of QR codes, to explore the innovative learning platform provided by the school. The aim is to celebrate local history, key locations and embrace children’s imaginations.

The idea was developed due to the children’s concerns about Barry Island’s dwindling tourism. They wished to bring a new generation of tourists to the area and utilise the fantastic new wifi put into place by our Chair of Governors (Dave Vining) and the ICT team at the Vale of Glamorgan Council. It was decided to tie the project in with Healthy schools initiatives for  increasing physical activity and enhancing outdoor learning.

In 2015 the school rolled out the ‘Learn to Read, Read to Learn’ Literacy project. This has seen children immerse themselves in exciting stories and develop literacy skills across the school.

The Story Trail has;

Encouraged children to write short stories about key points around the Island and local area.
Allow each class to visit, plan and write a story about their focus point e.g. The Lighthouse.
Created stories that will be generated into QR codes and placed for everyone to read on a sign at each point.
Improve knowledge of QR codes and means they will be built and placed permanently at each location, creating a hiking trail around the Island.
Developed a website by directing visitors to our homepage via the QR codes.  (Created, maintained and developed by our wonderful staff and children at BIPS.)
Benefited the children’s creativity through working with a local artist. She worked with children to design a logo for the project.

Deputy Headteacher Mr Broad said the following:

“This pupil led project began as an idea to increase tourism and improve awareness of local history. It has evolved into a community event that is supported by Barry Town Council and the Vale Tourism department.

The aim is for this ‘Trail’ to be identified as an official walking trail and signposted by the Vale of Glamorgan. Following presentations and proposals from the school they have been granted permission from Barry Town Council and the Tourism department to build the trail and it is set to feature in the next round of leaflets and promotional footage from the Vale Tourism Department.

Matt Gilbert, Headteacher of Barry Island Primary added:

Barry Island Primary School feel it is an exciting opportunity to share children’s writing and create a buzz around Barry Island for all ages. An inter-generational project of this magnitude will give the new generation of tourists an exciting and innovative method of visiting the Island.

Barry Island Beach is the first beach front in the UK to provide free wifi for its visitors. This project will be the first of its kind and provide a dynamic and innovative attraction to the Island.

Prior to the Story Trail launch, there is a FREE exhibition at Barry Island Primary school from January 9th-12th from 3.30-5.30pm each day. The exhibition, in conjunction with Barry Island Historical Group, will showcase pictures and memorabilia from Barry Island’s wonderful community.

You can find out more by following the project on twitter. Also, any local business wishing to be involved is invited to contact the school.