North Walsham schoolchildren link up live with Brad in Australia

A real-time glimpse of the Australian night sky and a Down Under didgeridoo performance helped bring the variety and wonders of the big wide world alive for north Norfolk pupils.

Children at North Walsham's Millfield Primary School spent a day globe-trotting in their classrooms, learning about the cultures of Asia, Australasia, Africa and the Caribbean.

Saris, corked hats, brightly-coloured headdresses and Bob Marley Rastafarian' hairdos replaced Millfield's usual school uniform as the 296 pupils enjoyed musical, dance, cookery and art activities connected with the four parts of the world.

And modern technology made it possible for some pupils to see and talk directly with a staff member's friend Brad from his home in Australia, using Skype software.

Brad took his computer outside to show the children that it was night time on the other side of the world and then played the didgeridoo for them, said Millfield head teacher Jan Harazdiuk.

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All the pupils got a chance during the day to take part in either Bollywood or Zumba dancing, African drumming or blowing a didgeridoo.

Mrs Harazdiuk said: 'Our international challenge day has had a huge amount of benefits for the children in understanding and widening their awareness of different cultures.

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'A lot of them here have probably never been outside Norfolk, let alone abroad, and have a fairly limited awareness of the world.'

The event was planned for the same week as Commonwealth Day and Millfield will continue keeping a window open on the rest of the world through email links it has established with schools in Italy and France.

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