The platform, which was open from 30 March to 3 July, has received over a thousand drawings, writings, photographs, videos and other creations sent by the city’s children expressing their feelings, concerns and experiences during the state of alert. All the materials received are being used to create a teaching portfolio in accordance with professional education criteria so that it can be available to the city’s primary schools next academic year. In addition, the children’s works will be included in a touring exhibition that will move around the city during this coming school year and will be added to the Lockdown Memories as a testament to this period from a non-adult point of view.
In the just over three months of the state of alert, over 600 children have used the Estimat diari platform to share their experiences and express their emotions, with over a thousand creations submitted. Barcelona City Council has started working with all these works to create a portfolio of teaching materials that are to be available next academic year at the city’s primary schools. Between 30 March and 3 July – the period during which materials could be submitted – children could send anything from drawings, paintings and photographs to essays, tales or stories.
These teaching materials will be used for pupils in the middle or higher stages of primary school (aged between 8 and 12) to provide tools and support to work on the experiences, emotions and sensations experienced by children during lockdown and work on related skills, such as emotional, social and art skills. The testimonies collected through the Estimat diari creations have already been analysed and reflected on by many education and teaching specialists, and eight reflections have been posted on the educa.barcelona website in partnership with Diari de l’Educació.
The aim of the teaching portfolio is to enable students to express their emotions and uphold the role of children as important people with rights. The proposal, which will be broad and flexible in order to adapt to the reality of each school, will be developed in accordance with professional and pedagogical criteria.
As well as providing a platform for posting the creations of the city’s children, the Estimat diari platform has also included the programmes that have featured the video questions posed by children to Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau from time to time, as well as psychosocial tools such as the FAQ page, a resource available to families to ensure access to suitable information.
In the programme “L’alcaldessa respon als infants” [“The mayor responds to young children”], with a total of eight episodes, Ada Colau has answered the questions of over 160 children. The videos have been viewed 113,500 times in total through both the estimatdiari.barcelona website and social media.
In addition, the FAQ page, which has been viewed almost 5,000 times since it was launched in mid-May, provided answers to 44 subjects from a transdisciplinary point of view, with scientific answers adapted to children’s understanding of coronavirus and Covid-19. In addition, the resource provided tools to respond to issues such as the feeling of missing friends and family, children’s relationship with their parents, and private emotions and concerns relating to lockdown, such as mental exhaustion, boredom, sadness, being scared, or the feelings of loss or wanting to cry. This content has been developed thanks to the collaboration of the professional associations of psychologists, education specialists, social workers and social education specialists.
A touring exhibition and a valuable testimony of lockdown
Since the start of the health crisis, Barcelona City Council has paid particular attention to children. This educational project continues to serve the need that gave rise to the Estimat diari platform at the start of lockdown. Launched on 30 March, just two weeks after the declaration of the state of alert, the platform Estimat Diari: Barcelona des de casa amb ulls d’infant [Dear Diary: Barcelona from home through children’s eyes] was designed as a blank page to create a collective diary of the city in lockdown through children’s eyes, giving them a voice and acknowledging and promoting their role as active citizens.
A selection of contributions to Estimat diari will be used for a touring exhibition in recognition of the children’s participation in the project. The opening will coincide with the La Mercè festivities, and the exhibition will then open in various neighbourhoods in the city.
In addition, the children’s works will be added to the Lockdown Memories, a project promoted by the Councillor’s Office for Democratic Memory as a testament to this period through children’s eyes, expanding this archive from a non-adult point of view.