Children’s academy: from the merovingians to the worm snake

Children's academy: from the merovingians to the worm snake

It all started 1400 years ago with the merovingians: the kitzingen children's academy has lost none of its appeal over the past twelve years. The up-and-coming students are still eager to get down to business, reports the organizer, regional manager maja schmidt.

Question: when was the very first event – and what was it about??

Maja schmidt: we started in january 2007 with a historical theme: 'a perfectly normal day – 1400 years ago! Come with us on a journey to the time of the merovingians!'.

Who invented it?

Schmidt: the idea came up during the call phase of the european call leader plus 2005. Various participants have considered whether it would be possible to create an attractive educational program – based on the idea of the children's universities – in the kitzingen region as well. At the beginning of 2007, we were able to start with the first lectures.

How many events have there been since then?? How many students came together over the years?

Schmidt: in the meantime, we had about 60 lectures on a wide variety of topics. In the past years, we usually had five lectures per semester with about 400 to 500 participants.

Where do the children come from? And what age are we talking about??

Schmidt: the elementary school children come from all over the district, and students from almost every municipality have already attended the children's academy. Many participants are naturally from kitzingen.

Where are the main topics?

Schmidt: we always try to cover a diverse mix of topics. Topics that children don't already have on the curriculum at school anyway.

What topic did you personally find most exciting??

Schmidt: i think particularly fondly of the lecture entitled 'what do you think??', which we already had twice in the program. Representatives of the churches, the mosque and the old synagogue present their houses of worship and religious needs in a joint talk. The lecture on snakes in october was also exciting, with some real worm snakes present.

Is there a trick to making topics suitable for children??

Schmidt: the facts should be packaged as clearly and numerically as possible. Most instructors allow a lot of questions or let the kids call in answers or vote by show of hands. But you can't make it much more interactive with around 100 children, otherwise it quickly gets restless

What has changed over the past twelve years??

Schmidt: in the first years there were a lot of children, because it was a new offer. Perhaps the first pisa shock also played a role. In recent years, however, we have settled down at the above-mentioned student numbers.

How the project is financed?

Schmidt: the parents can leave a small donation and the rest will be taken over by the local action group Z.I.E.L., the association mainly responsible for handling the european leader claim. Since the lecturers are volunteers, the costs for materials and travel are quite low.

How will it go on in 2020?

Schmidt: on 18. January at the old synagogue: what is chemistry?? Martin schwab explains what a chemist does and how a chemical reaction works.

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