This is Lights On®

Stories from our Lights On® Changemaker families.

Lights On® Family Culture

At the end of another Lights On® JAM, let’s look at how creative, collaborative learning enables us to shape family culture, empowering parents to change the way we think about ourselves and our children as we learn alongside one another.

Sixty families from around the world gathered online this week, kickstarting our JAM with fabulous learning carousels, laying out a feast of activities to entice our families to dig in and get creative.

Where do our children naturally turn, what grabs and sustains their interest, what lights them up?

As parents, we want our children to be happy, engaged learners, but what about us, the adults in the mix? Often, we forget our own creative genius, what lights us up. As important as our children’s choices, what catches our attention on the learning carousel? Where do we find our interest piqued, our engagement sustained? 

There is abundant creative storytelling emerging in our community as well as young engineers designing,...

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We're Jamming!

We're Jamming! 

Getting hands-on and creative, Lights On® style...

by one of our Lights On® Mums, Alice Khimasia

This morning, my 8-year-old woke me up to tell me he needed to film a ‘how-to’ video for his friends on the JAM.

The 3-day JAM is over, but the learning continues. He makes the instructional video and I am amazed. This is not something I have shown him, not even something I know anything about. But he is an expert. He has learned from his brothers and peers, and by playing around on his iPad.

His knowledge and abilities surprise me. I wonder what other talents lie undiscovered within him. He sits entirely absorbed as he continues to work on a couple of the movies he created during the event. When a child’s lights are on, the depth of their understanding, the level of their skills, will surprise us.

I like to be surprised as a parent. I confess I was skeptical about joining the JAM. I was anxious I wouldn’t have the capacity to show...

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Interview with Darren de Lima

passion-led learning Sep 01, 2019

Darren de Lima is a local product designer and electronics student at Bath Spa university. Since he was 14 he has been making action figures out of recycled materials. His figures have inspired him to start writing a novel based on his characters that he’s developed.

On the run-up to one of our action figure inspired holiday sessions back when we had the Creative Learning Centre, we asked him a few questions about his creations.


Lego’s 2001-2010 Bionicle – Rahkshi

1) What inspired you to start making your own action figures when you were young? 

Interesting things I’ve seen. My starting point, I guess, was Lego’s 2001-2010 Bionicle – they were buildable robot action figures and I loved them. Then I wanted to make my own toys, to play cool things with and, more recently, as characters in their overarching story. I fell in love with making my own, and I still do enjoy it. 


2) You make your figures out of recycled...
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Email Whitelisting Explorium

Uncategorized Dec 07, 2018
How to Whitelist Email from Explorium
for AOL, Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail, Outlook,
Thunderbird, Apple Mail, Postini & More

To ensure that the email we send you ends up in your inbox, and isn't mistakenly sent to the junk folder, please whitelist our email address, which is [email protected] or [email protected].

Below is information on how to whitelist us with AOL, Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail, Outlook, Apple Mail, ThunderBird and Postini. Even if your email provider is not listed, with these instructions you should be able to figure out how to whitelist our email address at any ISP or with any email program.

Also, if you find email from [email protected] in your spam or junk folder, please take that opportunity to tell your mail program that it is not spam by hitting the "not spam", "not junk" or similar button, as that will train your program to whitelist it.


To add [email protected] to your AOL address book:

1. Open an email from us and then...

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Big Top Circus

When speaking to members of the audience after each show, typical comments I heard were “Inspirational”, “Fantastic”, “Unbelievable”,  “Hugely Impressive” and even “In Awe”.

The Great Justinino – Ringmaster (Volunteer Parent)


Seeing the impact our combined creative efforts had on the children was the first major source of inspiration behind Explorium.

Julia Black

In 2009 a group of volunteer parents combined their skills, talents and time and gave all 104 pupils at Butleigh Primary school the chance of a lifetime – to run away with the circus. This was a hugely ambitious project, which mobilized ordinary parents to stage an extraordinary experience for their children and have a direct impact on their education. 

A core team of parents worked with the children for six months training them in juggling, unicycling, clowning and performance poetry, among other skills. Then a dedicated Circus...

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Tree Play - Search for the illusive Great Breach Creature

When “Mad Pete”, a local Natural History obsessive, sent out the call for help to search for the illusive Great Breach Creature (GBC) he was soon joined by 40 intrepid and aspiring film-makers, aged 6-9 years old.

Accompanied by three Natural History filmmakers, who having heard a sighting could be imminent had come to capture this creature on film for the first time. Their wild adventure took them deep into the Somerset woods following a trail of feathers, scat and odd-looking tracks.

When they came across a huge nest with three giant eggs they knew they were close.

Now they faced the long wait! Cameras ready. Sound ready. But where was the GBC? 

Check out their film to find out whether they did spot the illusive beast.


Our intrepid explorers came from Rode Methodist First School and this is what Carolyn Tommey, Head Adventurer, had to say about Tree Play:

  • Excellent educational value – definitely the best educational visit I have ever been...
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Could Fear Of Failure Be A Cause Of Your Child's Anxiety?

Fear of failure seems to be an increasing problem for our children, and in particular for those considered ‘more able’ academically. They don’t want to get things wrong and can get stuck always learning within their safe zone.

At Explorium we talk about learning out towards our edges which inevitably means getting a lot wrong! In fact we are so upfront that we will be making mistakes together, that we learn about neurons, synapses and neuroplasticity! Once our children understand the basic neuroscience behind what is going on in their brains when they get something wrong, they relax and begin to see failure as part of the adventure towards success.

But it doesn’t always come easy! The problem many of our children face today is they may not be getting enough challenge. If they are able (or more than able!) to do the work that is presented to them then they are probably far too comfortable with getting things right and are not building up emotional resilience...

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