On Friday Year 4 had a visit from local MP Harriet Baldwin. Miss Hall had invited her in to talk to the children about climate change, a very hot topic in Year 4.
As part of the visit Mrs Baldwin spoke to the children about the democratic progress in this country, Government commitment to the environment and how votes are taken in parliament. Some of the children felt that they should be allowed to vote in general elections and Mrs Baldwin took on the role of the Speaker of the House, chairing a debate on the tabled motion, ‘This House believes that 9 year olds should be allowed to vote in general elections’. Proposing and opposing ‘ministers’ stood up to argue their point, then, with the help of their counters they kept a tally of which member of the class voted with them on the issue. When all the votes were counted and everyone was sat down again, the Speaker announced the results and it was a narrow victory for the ayes!
After this Mrs Baldwin spoke to the children about the up-coming Conference on Climate Change, that she will be attending in Glasgow. She asked the children what they would like to see happen in the future and they shared with her their concerns over the use of fossil fuels, the rise of global warming and the melting of the ice caps. They told her that they would like to see a lot more renewable energy used in this country. Mrs Baldwin promised to take their views and share them at the conference. She then took questions from the class about Government policy and commitment to the environment.
The children had a very interesting hour and learnt a lot about democracy in the UK. Thank you Mrs Baldwin for taking the time to come and talk to them.