Racing as an aid to learning: new videos aimed at stopping pupils missing out

A still from the first of the new series of Racing to School animation videos

The charity Racing to School, which delivers racing-related education programs free to schools at racecourses, studs and trainers’ yards across the UK, has come up with a way to keep its work going despite the coronavirus crisis.

It has just launched a new series of interactive animation videos aimed at bringing to life its racing-based maths activity workbook. As racing has not taken place since mid-March, over 3,000 young people have missed out on the opportunity to experience a unique experience of the sport, and the chance to improve their numeracy skills in the fast-moving classroom a racecourse provides.

“It is very unlikely that school trips will be routine again until the autumn, which is why we’ve been busy translating our resources on-line. Producing the three new films was the next step in trying to keep young people, families and schools in touch with racing,” said Racing to School Chief Executive John Blake.

The set of three videos, the first of which is out this week, is narrated by Racing to School ambassador and BBC racing commentator John Hunt.

The films are interactive and cover many of the topics that make up a full Racing to School activity day. The journey starts in the weighing room and, in later films, there are puzzles to solve in the parade ring and a visit onto the course to learn even more about measurements and distances in the ‘Final Furlong’.

“We have to accept that it will be some time before our school groups are brightening up racedays wearing their colourful silks, but racing can still play its part in keeping learning fun and interesting,” said Blake.

“The team came up with the idea of producing interactive animation films to add to young people’s learning at home. We’ve also posted numerous other resources to our website recently.”

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