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A Day in Politics at Drapers Academy

Students from Year 7 to 11 from Drapers Academy took part an Enabling Enterprise challenge day to get them engaged in the fascinating world of politics. As part of their enterprise work at school, students spent a day addressing important social issues to create a new vision for society. They worked collaboratively to run their own campaigns to win the election, creating slogans, manifestos and eye-catching promotional materials to win over voters. As the winning party would be whisked away on a business trip to a top London business the competition stakes were high.

Building Teamwork and Communication Skills

The day began with an energetic opening assembly which promised a full immersion into the dynamic world of politics and created suspense for the challenges ahead. In the early stages of the day, the students learned the tools of political success, by engaging in fun activities which combined the key ingredients of teamwork, creativity, communication, persuasion, and public relations.

The first challenge – to build the Houses of Parliament using only newspaper, scissors and sellotape – was tackled with great enthusiasm and ingenuity. Through a combination of teamwork and creativity, the students created some very impressive structures, which were arguably improvements on the original!

Moving swiftly on to the second challenge, the teams were introduced to key part of politics – debating! Students learned the rules of debating, where they engaged in a lively discussion about the pros and cons of social media. Since everyone had an opinion to give and a question to ask, the atmosphere was engaging and electric, with some fantastic public speakers stepping up to mesmerise their audiences. One Year 7 class was transformed into the House of Commons, where the proposition and the opposition directly faced each other for a final showdown, which reluctantly disbanded at break time.

Creating a Campaign Strategy

After a quick energy boost, the students were eager to get stuck into the next challenge, which would provide vital training for the next generation of political leaders. Through a series of interactive games, the students gained a direct insight into the benefits of democratic representation and the processes of governance. By identifying the people of society who would most benefit from state support, the students had an opportunity to discuss issues which mattered to them and to see how politics impacted upon everyday life. Having gained all the political know-how, the students were introduced to the final challenge – to create their own political party with a full manifesto and campaign strategy – with only 2 hours to go before the election!

There was a flurry of activity, as students developed the content and the presentation of their political vision, working together to produce insightful policies and colourful rosettes. The party promises addressed all sectors of society: from supporting local farmers to tackling pollution; from supporting the elderly to providing life skills training for young people; from boosting job opportunities to abolishing tuition fees. In addition, the parties developed impressive marketing strategies, designing and selling party merchandise to persuade hesitant voters to their side.

Presenting their Parties before the Election

The competition mounted as the hustings began, with each party giving a lively presentation to convince the public that they had ideas and skills to lead the country. Speeches were given, banners were flown, votes were cast, and – after a suspenseful pause – a classroom winner was announced, and the post-election celebrations began! The final task of deciding upon an overall winner then fell to the teachers. With so many excellent parties on offer, the choice was not an easy one, but one party did stand out for its enthusiasm, teamwork and political insight. A warm congratulations to ‘The Youth Party’ of 8NHS , whose stunning array of campaign materials and core manifesto of inclusion, community values and respect for others, left a lasting impression on the judges.

Thank you to all the teachers who helped make the day possible and to all the inspirational students who stood up to make their voices heard! Drapers Academy, with you in charge, the future of the UK will be in good hands.

Throughout the day, Drapers Academy made excellent progress, developing their negotiation and communications skills in each task that was set. They also became engaged in the world of politics and some even realised that this is a possible career path for the future. If you’d like to learn more about Enabling Enterprise challenge days, or how we can support you to embed enterprise in your school, Contact Us today.

About Enabling Enterprise: … Our Mission Enabling Enterprise is an award-winning not-for-profit social enterprise, set up...



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