A child-led initiative was launched by Wylye Valley Primary School’s own Instagram page wylyevalleyprimaryschool.

The school, in Codford, is a regular user of Facebook to provide information to parents, grandparents or other relatives keen to see what happens in the school. It is a popular format led by Head Teacher, Robert Barnes, with the assistance of members of staff, featuring events, updates, breaking news and activities throughout the term.

Marketing and Social Media Manager, Gaby Nichol was asked by Robert to help with the project.  She has a degree in International Hospitality Management and has worked across the USA and has experience working in marketing and digital advertising. Gaby introduced the upper Key Stage 2 children into the whys and wherefores relating to online safety (one of the key learning objectives of this venture), appropriate content and a light-hearted approach to promoting the unique qualities of their school. She began by asking the children what they thought marketing was, and explained the idea of the child-led Instagram page. She tasked the pupils to create a non-scripted tour of the school, encouraging them to use their own thoughts and words and interact with their virtual audience in a chatty and informal manner.

The children embraced the challenge of learning how to film and edit video and photo content to post onto their Instagram account which, although child-led, is supervised by adults. Gaby was impressed with the “whirlwind of great imagination on how to create the Instagram page.  Every child immediately got stuck in and came up with fantastic ideas.”

Although the school’s Instagram page is still in its infancy, Robert believes it is a ground-breaking venture and that “Wylye Valley is one of the first schools” to take such a hands on and practical approach to internet safety and awareness.