Can a football museum lower crime and improve literacy?

October 12, 2010

This is the teacher's information pack from the NFM - it explains that programs can be offered which relate directly to National Curriculum in History, Citizenship, Science, Literacy, Design and Technology and Physical Education.

Police statistics prove that when a group of NEET (Not in Employment, Education or Training) youth are in a poetry workshop run by the National Football Museum, crime rates have fallen.

Peter Evans, Head of Learning at the National Football Museum explained that Street Speak, a project funded by the Football Foundation and the Arts Council, brings together groups of young people with professional poets to harness thier interest in football to help raise literacy, self-esteem and aspirations. As well as learning about different styles of poetry and having a shot at writing and performing their own, the participants also have a chance to hone their football skills.

The Museum (scheduled to open in a new location in Manchester in 2011) also hosts education programs across a wide variety of subject areas, including literacy, science, maths, inclusion and citizenship (with some amazing stories about how popular women’s football used to be, and how it was shut down by the football powers of the day). There is even a program tied into the Religious Education curriculm. As Peter explained it to me, just as a household can be divided in thier loyalty to football teams but can still get along and live happily together, there are lessons about tolerance and prejudice that we can take from football and apply in a broader context.


4 Responses to “Can a football museum lower crime and improve literacy?”

  1. Kristy Says:

    when was women’s football quashed?
    Love following your blog by the way!
    Kristy xx

    • Hi Kristy,

      Apparently women’s football was very popular in the 1880s. Peter told me that in1920 there was a women’s game in Liverpool on Boxing Day that was attended by 53,000 people. They were amateurs, but people paid to watch the game, and the money went to charity. Worried that it would continue to grow in popularity, the FA (Football Association) banned women’s football from proper pitches with proper referees for 50 years – they used the excuse that it was bad for women’s health!

      Hard to believe, isn’t it!


  2. Doktorb Says:

    As welcome as it is to see the NFM working with schools and community groups, it could have done this perfectly well within its original location at Preston.

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