Video: Lego models help Mileham Primary School pupils drive home their road safety message
- Credit: IAN BURT
Young pupils at a primary school near Dereham have made a powerful stop-motion Lego video to illustrate the deadly dangers of speeding on the roads.
Road safety is an all-too-common concern at rural schools, but what is the best way of raising the profile of a campaign... leaflets and posters? Maybe speed checks?
Mileham Primary has tried all of those, but its pupils decided they needed an extra dimension if they really wanted to drive their message home.
So they created a hard-hitting video which pulls no punches in portraying the shocking consequences of speeding – using sets and characters built from Lego.
The two-minute film published on YouTube features shocking crashes, a hospital scene, a nightmarish dream sequence, and a powerful finale where a casualty – a dismantled Lego figure – haunts the speeding driver by saying: 'You killed me'.
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It is entirely the work of three creative pupils at the school, near Dereham, who used a stop-motion technique similar to the one used by Wallace and Gromit creators Aardman Animation, who were an inspiration to the young film-makers.
Each of the production team brought specialist skills to the joint effort: Denholm Raine, 11, is an aspiring computer animator, Ben Casey, 11, wrote and played the music, and Fred Foulkes, 10, is a talented model-maker.
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They also researched information from the police and the Department of Transport to reinforce the key messages of their film, using statistics to show how increases in speed bring a rising toll of casualties, particularly on rural roads.
Fred said: 'We wanted to show people the realities of what can happen. We want people to watch it and not speed through villages like Mileham, or anywhere really.'
Ben added: 'People could get really hurt and there are lots of children about.'
The team remained modest about their final product, as Denholm explained: 'We are really inspired by Aardman, so when we look at our work compared to theirs it is not as good.'
The school's road safety project was part of the Go-Givers 'Make a Difference' challenge, a national programme which aims to encourage primary school pupils to take ownership of the issues which affect them.
Mileham headteacher Ed Pearson-Shaul, said: 'The video is a superb piece of visual work from three young lads and it is entirely their own work, from the story-boarding to the recording.
'It does not pull any punches. If a teacher had worked with them throughout, there are some bits that we would have tried to talk them out of. But by giving them their head and allowing them to make their own decision about what is in there, I think they have produced something that is far more effective.'