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Our Time on Earth Classroom Resources

image with natural resources

Bring Our Time on Earth into the classroom with our series of classroom resources that go further into specific artworks in the exhibition.

Aimed at Key Stage 2 and 3, these provide teachers with notes, presentations, activities and source material to explore the subject matter creatively while linking across the national curriculum. 
With our Primary series, wow your students with the complexity of Soil, inspire them to look differently at their Local Wildlife, and invite them to throw a Multi-Species Banquet.
With our Secondary series, explore Indigenous wisdom for keys to planetary survival, discover biomaterials and sci-fi to think up the future of Fashion, and recognise the role of Cities as the heart of both the problem and solution to the climate emergency.
These Learning Resources were created by Hannah Calascione for Barbican Creative Learning, with ethical consultation from Angela Chan, Angela Camacho and Sarah Melia.

Soil Universe

Explore the beauty and complexity of the soil, an ecosystem full of life, and not just dirt! Using the installation The Ground Beneath Our Feet, by George Monbiot and Holition as a starting point, this resource provides notes on soil, the food web, biodiversity and farming. Includes activities to get your hands dirty, and get creative.

Suggested for Key Stage 2.
Curriculum Links: Science, Art, Citizenship, Geography

Soil Universe Presentation

Soil Universe Teacher Resource

Looking at Local Wildlife

Combat "plant blindness" by teaching students to notice and classify the living ecosystem around them, and explore our relationship to nature through photography. Using the photo series Eyes as Big as Plates by Karoline Hjorth and Riitta Ikonen as a starting point, this resource provides notes on plant identification, portraits and landscapes, and different perspectives of local wildlife. Includes activities to get crafty and get outside.

Suggested for Key Stage 2 or 3.
Curriculum Links: Science, Art, Citizenship, Geography

Local Wildlife Presentation

Local Wildlife Teacher Resource

Multi-species Banquet

Invite all your favourite animals to dinner, and then invite the pests, plants, insects, and microbes, in a future world where all species are equal. Using the installation Refuge for Resurgence by Superflux as a starting point, this resource provides notes on ecosystems, classification, equality and empathy. Includes activities to reflect and challenge, as well as invent and illustrate.

Suggested for Key Stage 2.
Curriculum Links: Science, Geography, English, Citizenship, Design and Technology, Art

Multispecies Banquet Presentation

Multi-species Banquet Teacher Resource

Indigenous Future

Engage with contemporary indigenous thinking to address the links between colonialism and climate change, while finding powerful ways to connect with planet earth. Using the films by Selvagem, and a “Letter to the West” written by Choose Earth as a starting point, this resource provides notes on global justice, colonialism and traditional ecological knowledge. Includes activities for analysing the source material and responding creatively to it.

Suggested for Key Stage 3 and 4.
Curriculum Links: History, English, Science, Art, Geography, Citizenship

Indigenous Future Presentation

Indigenous Future Teacher Resource

Future Cities

Reflect on the relationship between wilderness and cities, and discover the ways urban living can be both the problem and the solution to the climate emergency. Using Ideal City by Space10 and Planet City by Liam Young as a starting point, this resource provides notes on rewilding, urbanisation and radical action. Includes activities for creative writing and political thinking. 

Suggested for Key Stage 3 and 4.
Curriculum Links: Citizenship, English, Science, History, Geography, Design and Technology.

Future Cities Presentation

Future Cities Teacher Resource

Future Fashion

Learn about new technologies developed to grow textiles from microbiology, reflecting natural cycles on the planet. Using the exhibit by Biofabricate as a starting point, this resource provides notes on sustainable fashion, bio-design, global justice and sci-fi. Includes activities for design and for creative writing.

Suggested for Key Stage 3 and 4.
Curriculum Links: Design and Technology, English, Science, Citizenship, Art, Geography, History

Future Fashion Presentation

Fashion Future Teacher Resource
Group of dancers on a stage with blue background and lights

Further Opportunity

Please see below for a further opportunity from Complicité:
Can I Live?
By Fehinti Balogun
Produced by Complicité

A new online performance about the climate emergency. With rap, theatre & animation, Fehinti links the climate crisis & social justice, finding hope, through activism, for the future. 
Catch the Trailer of the film here.
If you want to discover more about the ecological emergency, climate justice and the creatives behind this filmed performance download the digital resource pack.
To screen the film at your school contact Complicité via [email protected]