Tuesday, 24 March 2015

St Peter’s Church Develop Historical Experience For Children

New interactive Anglo-Saxon experience for children at St Peter's Church, Sunderland

The new program has been developed in order to explore the Anglo-Saxon history of the church in Monkwearmouth, writes Alice Jones.

Activities at the church involve dressing up as a monk, music and literacy, crafts and role play in order to teach children about the life of an Anglo-Saxon monk. It is hoped that the program will encourage visits from local primary schools, as the activities match the curriculum for Key Stage 1 and 2. The aim is to allow children’s education to be enhanced by hands on experiences.

Reverend Paul Child, of St Peter's Church, said the project can "help our children know they are part of a much bigger story, that where they live has such a special part to play in British history, and hopefully inspire them to strive to be the best versions of themselves they can.

"We in Sunderland can be particularly proud of having one of the oldest places of Christian worship in the UK right on our doorstep.  A group of very talented, very committed volunteers at St. Peter's realised that, if these stones could speak, they would have an amazing story to tell - of Anglo-Saxon's & Vikings, of industrial growth and decline"

The history of St Peters Church in Monkwearmouth dates back to 674AD. The site is currently undergoing a £1million renovation by Sunderland City Council, works are due to finish this summer.

Sunderland Councillor for Public Health, Wellness and Culture, John Kelly, said: "As well as facilities for the local prayer and community groups plans are well underway to encourage schools to make the most of this fantastic resource.

"The St Peter’s Educational Activities for Kids (SPEAK) project is a key stage 1 and 2 learner resource involving travelling back in time and getting a hands-on experience of life as an Anglo-Saxon monk.

"I hope that as many residents, community groups and schools as possible take the opportunity to go along get involved with and learn more about this rich historical site right here in Sunderland.”

There is a charge of £1 per child for the new exhibit, and schools can benefit from full or half day trips. Bookings can be made via the parish office. Contact Val Hughes (Available weekdays until 1pm) on 0191 5160135 or email bookings can be taken at monkwearmouth.parish@durham.anglican.org

For more information visit speakproject.co.uk
To see more from our guest writer Alice, follow her on Twitter - @alicejones___

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