Our Lives

What is it like to be a child growing up today? How do children’s everyday experiences differ across the country?

Our Lives: Growing Up Today is a new initiative by the Children’s Commissioner for England and First News to capture and celebrate the real, diverse nature of childhood now.

The Children’s Commissioner’s ambition is to create an online library of childhood – made by children – that will grow and evolve over time to both inspire and challenge generations. Our Lives is a unique platform for children to share how they view the world and a catalyst to reboot adult’s vision of childhood.

A specially commissioned film presenting a snapshot of children’s lives across the country is available now at live.firstnews.co.uk/ourlives.

Children across the country are invited to respond to the film and add their own stories by taking the Our Lives 10 Question Challenge - ten simple questions they can answer via video selfie.

A step-by-step guide makes it easy for teachers to run the Our Lives challenge in their school and ensure all pupils can take part.

Taking part in Our Lives creates rich learning opportunities that teachers can explore and build on through the school resources.

The Our Lives library, together with a series of blogs and offline events will give policy makers, service providers and researchers an engaging resource alongside a deep dive into the key issues that affect young people.

In addition to First News, the leading newspaper for children, Our Lives is supported by BFI, British Library, Into Film PopJam, Turner Contemporary and V&A Museum of Childhood. Their combined expertise, resources and reach will help ensure all children in England can take part and that there is a long term strategy for this important collection.

Our Lives is a bold and innovative experiment with great national partners that will bring to light the hopes, fears and joys of children growing up today.

Anne Longfield, Children’s Commissioner for England, said:

“This is an exciting and important project for me. It will bring to life what children think about growing up in England today, and get a more detailed picture beyond what is said on social media. I want as many schools, parents, carers and children as possible to get involved in creating a unique snapshot of how children really see themselves and their world, what they are passionate about, their hopes, dreams and any fears. I see it as a time capsule for the future. Our lives will add to our understanding of the changing nature of childhood and how to respond to those challenges and opportunities.

I am delighted to have so many high profile national partners supporting the project, bringing such a wide range of expertise and insight. This is just the start of what I am sure will be a fascinating journey that will see children empowered to tell their own story without the pressure of social media perfection.”

Nicky Cox, Editor in Chief of First News, said:

“Lots of adults do lots of talking about children, speculating about what it’s like to be growing up in today’s world. But, do we really know how children feel and how they think? First News is thrilled to be working with the Children’s Commissioner to give children a voice about what it’s like to be them – their hopes, fears, dreams and worries. What children tell us will be a fascinating insight into their lives and will enable policy makers to really listen to our youngest generation when making decisions that affect them.”

How you can help:

  • Watch the Our Lives film with your class or group
  • Register as an Our Lives school
  • Ask your pupils to take on the Our Lives 10 Question Challenge
  • Upload your ‘video selfies’ to the national Our Lives Library

Join In: schools.firstnews.co.uk/ourlives

The Our Lives 10 Question Challenge

  1. My favourite food is…

  2. At the weekend I…

  3. The most important person in my life is… because…

  4. The most important thing I own is……

  5. The best thing about where I live is … because…

  6. The best thing about the internet is … because…

  7. What makes me happy is…

  8. What makes me worry is…

  9. If I was in charge of my school I would … because…

  10. If I was in charge of the country I would … because…

     

    Bonus Question: Tell us a joke…

Contact us to find out more, and watch this space for more information