Students play grown-ups at KidZania, London

Date Posted: 29/06/2015

In the hospital at KidZania, London.

Pictured: In the hospital at KidZania, London.

KidZania London officially opened on 25th June for children aged between four and 14. School Travel Organiser went to the launch to see what the attraction can offer schools.

Following its official launch at Westfield, London, KidZania is now open to children aged between four and 14. Here is a rundown of all the information you need to know when deciding whether your students should make a visit.

What is it?

KidZania London is a 75,000 square foot child-size city which offers children the opportunity to learn about over 60 professions, from being a surgeon or fashion stylist to a cabin crew member or hotel receptionist. The KidZania concept was first established in 1999. The London attraction is the 19th of its kind worldwide and it aims to combine inspiration, fun and learning through realistic role play.

On first entrance to KidZania, children are given KidZos – the currency in the city – and from there they are free to spend their money, earn more by getting involved in a variety of different jobs, or save it by setting up a bank account. They can then take this money away (as well as their bank card) and return to spend it on a later visit. This concept gives students a sense of responsibility and accountability; if they spend all their money, they will need to go and earn more.

What is there in the city?

The city is complete with buildings, vehicles and a working economy. There is a police station, fire station, airline, A&E, theatre, radio station, an H&M, sports stadium, and a Gourmet Burger Kitchen. The city also has its own newspaper, university, passports and currency.

Students can learn the importance of recycling at the recycling centre and then discover how to make a piece of paper from scratch. They can broadcast from the radio station to the city of KidZania after learning how to use professional studio equipment and they can learn about energy resources, generation and safety by becoming a maintenance technician at the city’s power station.

At the hospital and A&E, pupils can choose to be part of a surgery team, a paramedic team or become a maternity nurse, whilst at the Fruit and Nut Bar Makery, children will find out about the origins of ingredients and the importance of healthy foods.

There is also a courier service, a chance to climb a building and a supermarket to spend or serve in. In summary, there is lots for children to experience and discover.

Pictured: In the radio station at KidZania, London.

What are the main benefits of a visit to KidZania?

KidZania’s basic principle is: ‘Play adult roles’. It aims to prepare children for the real world by broadening their horizons and creating opportunities to inspire them in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM subjects).

According to KidZania, the concept has been developed so it can be appropriately cross-referenced to the National Curriculum in Maths, English, Science, Design & Technology and Computing. However, through a fun and interactive experience pupils will also learn about careers, teamwork, financial literacy, independence and decision making.

At the launch, Oxford Gardens Primary School teaching assistant Lorrie Knight said: “It’s been manic, but the children are really enjoying it and I think they’ve got a lot from it. It gives the students an opportunity to experience and try things that they otherwise wouldn’t get the opportunity to do.”

Does KidZania offer teaching resources for schools?

KidZania London plans to provide teachers with a series of online learning resources to use post visit.

For more information visit www.kidzania.co.uk.

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