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A west of Scotland school is leading the way in huge cross-curricular projects.

Dumbarton Academy's "1 World" project for S1s, which finishes today, has focused on citizenship. It follows previous ambitious projects tackling the environment and health, which were highlighted on the Learning and Teaching Scotland website.

"1 World" has tackled daunting issues, such as genocide, and encouraged pupils to see connections which extend across the planet and transcend subject boundaries.

The 12-day project has included seven out-of-timetable days, involving outside agencies and visits. The other days were structured around the timetable, so home economics looked at fair trade; maths investigated how the discipline has developed in cultures; the technical department scrutinised environmental benefits of alternative technologies; PE examined how sport and playground games connected people worldwide; and science dealt with the physical properties and value of metals and jewels in different places.

"The benefits are that pupils will get an idea of bigger themes than can be covered in one area of the school," said headteacher Graham Hutton. "The cross-curricular approach helps them understand that these encroach in all different parts of their lives."

The previous projects took S1 pupils out of their usual timetable altogether: Clim8 Change lasted eight days and Fit 4 Life, 10 days. Those experiences led staff to believe that the best model involves working at least partly within the timetable.

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