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Houses of Parliament Trip

Congratulations to the 20 school councillors who went to Parliament on Thursday 29th February 2024. Mrs Garratt, Mrs Lewis, Miss Hughes and I felt privileged to accompany such a respectful, responsible, enthusiastic and inquisitive group of children. They did themselves and Highfields proud. Despite the rainy British weather, the children didn’t complain and made the most of their historic adventure. I believe that we may have some potential leaders of the future!

On arriving in London, the children were very excited to see some of the sights of the capital city. This included the London Eye, Big Ben, as well as the famous double-decker red buses, black taxis and even the red telephone boxes!

We were shown around the Houses of Parliament and saw plaques and statues relating to previous kings and queens. We also learnt about the history of the building. The children were curious to learn more and asked many intelligent questions to further their understanding of the historic buildings. We were very lucky to watch debates in both the House of Lords and the House of Commons, where the children sat attentively and respectfully while the members of Parliament continued to voice their opinions on different subjects.

The children then discussed the differences that they observed between the House of Commons and the House of Lords. Afterwards, they demonstrated their thirst for learning by asking many intelligent questions to our guides about the Houses of Parliament, its history and about the government rules (British Values: Rule of Law).

The last activity was the Children’s workshop, where the children demonstrated the British Value of Individual Liberty by confidently voicing their personal opinions in a number of scenarios. It was a pleasure to see the children talking about their own individual views on the world. The children confidently explained the meaning of democracy (another British value) and why it is important for people’s voices to be heard. They explained how democracy is used at Highfields and how the children in our school elected them to the School Council. They also explained how the children of Highfields are given their voice by being asked for ideas on how to improve the school. Councillors then passed these ideas on to Mr Savvides and Mrs Garratt to discuss. The children enjoyed learning about the suffragettes and how women were given the right to vote. Subsequently, the children gave their views that men and women are equal, and they should be given the same opportunities, as well as the fact that there is now more equality in the world than in the past.

The trip concluded with lunch before our long trek home.  What a momentous day for children and adults. Well done School Council, you are the stars of the future!

Here are some views from Highfields School Council (Individual Liberty) about the day:

  • Ranveer: We learnt that everyone has a voice.
  • Gracie: We learnt that we should give people chances to speak.
  • Henry: Women should have the right to vote!
  • Nazia: We could see people in the debate with different skin colours. Now they don’t discriminate against people with differences.
  • Ranveer: We learnt that not everything is fair in the same way.
  • Aneesa: In the future, we could learn to be fairer and use other people’s opinions.
  • Amelie: We learnt who the different statues were of.
  • Betsy: It was really cool looking at the suffragettes.
  • Millie J: I really liked the Workshop. I liked choosing fair, unfair, very fair and very unfair.
  • Maisie: I really liked going to the debates.
  • Nazia: I preferred the House of Lords because he shared his own experiences, and it was less political.
  • Millie J: I learnt that the houses are ours and we can go in.
  • Betsy: They used evidence when they were speaking.
  • Aneesa: I really liked learning about the history of the houses of Parliament!
  • Leo: I liked looking at the plaques of old kings and queens.
  • Henry: I liked going around all the houses of Parliament.
  • Amelie: I liked seeing Big Ben.
  • Gracie: I really liked the nice chair in the House of Lords because it looked like the king sat in it.
  • Layla: I liked seeing all the statues of the male prime ministers.
  • Ranveer: I enjoyed looking at the decorations and colourful windows in the houses of Parliament.
  • Kohen: I enjoyed looking at the expensive jewellery in the houses of Parliament.
  • Tiarna: I liked Big Ben.
  • Sebastian: I liked Big Ben too!
  • Ajay: I liked the Houses of Commons.