London - Hospital kids' webbed feats

30th October 2009 at 00:00

Patients at London's Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children are taking part in a BBC learning project that gives students the chance to work with professional animators.

The BBC 21CC team promotes creative ways of using multimedia in teaching and learning by running free school workshops.

One of its projects is creating animated banner advertisements for Great Ormond Street's website about health and hospital issues: Children First for Health.

One of the seven schools working on the ads is Great Ormond Street hospital school.

John Sosna, assistant head of the school, said: "The three core aims of the school are normality, enjoyment and continuity. This project is about enlivening the curriculum. It is difficult for children to get out: they are often in isolation or getting intensive medical treatment for long periods. Working on a real project is very motivating for children."

The hospital school does not have to teach the national curriculum but tries to help children to dovetail learning with their mainstream school.

Priority is given to long-stay and repeat patients, but self-contained lessons have to be created. The animation project enables children to devise and create an animation in a single day; this can be extended in order to add special effects, sound or make a film.

The children think of an idea to promote healthy lifestyles, draw a storyboard and create or find backgrounds and characters. They then use a camera and Mac to create stop-motion or Flash animation.

Imy, 13, said: "I enjoy it. I like drawing. Though I don't normally like ICT, this is not all about computers. It is easy to use." hw.

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