Leicestershire CC's 'interactive cube' teaches primaries about superfast broadband

Primary school children at Brownlow Primary School in Melton have become the first in the county to trial a new learning resource which explains how fibre broadband works.

The new learning tool, known as ‘the interactive cube’, was developed by Leicestershire County Council's Superfast Leicestershire team to broaden the knowledge of youngsters around science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) skills.

The Year 6 pupils spent the day learning how fibre broadband travels from their local telephone exchange into their homes.

Through building their own fibre broadband network and connecting all the towns and villages, children can learn about the engineering behind the delivery and installation of fibre broadband.

The new interactive learning cube features a magnetic surface which is designed to look like a map of a local village.

Buildings that are familiar to children such as libraries and shops have been included alongside homes, farms and telephone exchange points so they can see how the main fibre network or spine is so important to the project.

Information on how it all works is included on the sides, along with an information key and a suggested game to play.

Pam Posnett, county council cabinet member and Brownlow governor, said: “The interactive cube is a real asset to the Superfast Leicestershire team and demonstrates the importance of supporting children and encouraging them to take an interest in science and technology so they’re prepared for what the future brings.”

Openreach engineer Nick Woodward also spoke to the children about his role. He said: "It was great to spend time with the children and Brownlow. They are of a generation that is able to do more online than any before them, and you can only imagine the possibilities as they get older. We may have even inspired an engineer of the future."

At the school, Leicestershire Police were also involved in advising the pupils about the safety aspects of using broadband. The force is at the forefront of the drive to raise awareness of the dangers of living in an increasingly digital world.

Brownlow head Damien Turrell said: “It was great for the school with Superfast Leicestershire and give the pupils an opportunity to learn the technical side of something they use every day and how to use it responsibly.  The whole day was something which year 6 will not forget and it's thanks to the county council, Openreach and Leicestershire police."

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