How Waterways Can Help
Britain’s inland waterways offer some amazing hands-on education opportunities, particularly in science, technology and maths subjects but also in humanities and the arts.
Outdoor classrooms and visits to local waterways provide a unique opportunity for school-aged children to get out of the classroom and see the built and natural heritage of their local waterway – at near zero cost to the education budget.
Our inland waterways played a key role in the Industrial Revolution, and visits to local canals or rivers can bring this history to life for young people. They can watch boats being worked through locks in exactly the same way they would have been 250 years ago, and help push a lock gate closed on stones worn smooth by centuries of other people standing in the same place doing the same thing.
Waterways offer many opportunities for intergenerational learning too. Visits, whether in school groups or with families, can also instil in young people an appreciation for the natural environment and the world around them.
Our waterways are an excellent introduction to the basics of how to harness nature effectively and are a brilliant gateway to STEM subjects, with teaching infrastructure (locks, bridges, channels) inspiring young people on to future careers in civil engineering and suchlike.