Our Town, Our Planet
This year PK Porthcurno’s Learning Facilitators Mae Voogd and Paul Tyreman set up for Quay Fair Day in Morrab Gardens in Penzance, with support from Maeve Twomlow and volunteer Chris Ridley.
The theme for this year’s Golowan was ‘Our Town, Our Planet’ and we responded to this by being playful with fun ways to communicate with our community.
We brought a variety of activities for families to interact with, the weather was spectacular, and we were able to enjoy engaging with a gentle flow of families whilst enjoying the music floating up from the bandstand.
Paul writes: “We like to promote physical computing – using programmable devices to do useful things – when we have the opportunity, so we took some BBC Micro: Bits set up in pairs to send and receive Morse Code. Because Quay Fair Day took place at the beginning of Speak Cornish Week (Seythen Kewsel Kernewek) we brought along some simple Cornish phrases for people to try out their Morse Code skills. As usual, Paul and our excellent volunteer Chris spotted some new features to add to activities like this, and they are now busy at home trying out ideas for future events.”
Of course, we had to bring back our fabulous gigantic bubbles!
We had a bucket of mixture and lots of different wands for people to use. The children really enjoyed making enormous bubbles with the big wand, seeing how far into the sky they could float, and seeing them drifting up above the trees!
When we ran with the bubbles, we could make dots and dashes like Morse Code which looked brilliant. We had so much fun with the bubbles that we nearly ran out of mixture before the day was over!
Squid Code Game
We created a game based on colour-coded letters inspired by the way Humbolt squids communicate by colour-changing. We had a colour-coded alphabet key, and each letter was made from a combination of three colours. We rigged up a couple of washing lines between the gazebo posts, and families could spell their names using coloured cards pegged onto the lines. Some of the younger children really enjoyed the act of pegging the cards onto the line no matter what it spelt out. It was great to see all ages of children interacting with the game.
We took a big tray and filled it with an assortment of Lego bricks and Duplo so children and adults could make wonderful creations. One parent commented that it was great to have it set up by the shade and she could relax while the children played.
We had several families who stayed for a long time which was great as they could have a go at everything we had on offer, and it was lovely to be able to have conversations with them too. A few families came back again after having a walk around the rest of the gardens and along the Prom.
Paul and I also had a wonderful moment sharing riddles with a brother and sister whilst their younger sibling got stuck into the Lego. I wrote one down for them to try and guess. See if you can have a go:
11 was a racehorse | 22 was 12 | 1111 race | 22112
We handed out vouchers to families to come and visit our museum throughout the event and we hope to see them again one day soon.
All in all, it was a wonderful day. We really enjoyed seeing so many families, some familiar faces, and some new ones too!
Written by Mae Voogd, Learning and Participation Facilitator | PK Porthcurno
Images taken by Maeve, Planet PK
Visit Golowanfestival.org for more information about the festival.