BBC School Report
On Thursday 10th March 2016, five Year 9 pupils took over Jason Mohammad’s radio show on BBC Radio Wales as part of the BBC School Report.
The project, now in its tenth year, aims to encourage school pupils to engage with the news by offering them the chance to produce stories on the things that matter to them.
After meeting with the team back in February, Alice, Adam, Eve, Jack and Livvey arrived at the BBC in Cardiff at 07:30, ready with the stories they wanted to feature. Before long, they were handed their scripts and told that not only would they be choosing the stories that feature in the show, they’d also be presenting these stories live on air!
Jason and his team helped prepare the pupils by running through their ideas and helping to calm any last minute nerves; it wasn’t long before 9 o clock came around and the pupils were preparing to ‘go live’ for the very first time.
First up in the studio were Alice and Adam. They chatted to Jason about how they’d prepared for the show and the different stories that they would be featuring. They also discussed their future aspirations and how being involved in this project had helped give them an insight into what it was like to make a live radio show.
Next up was Triple Play, Jason’s daily music quiz, with Jack taking over the reins. The quiz involves taking three very short clips of songs that the listener has to identify, and today’s listener was none other than Cowbridge’s very own Mr. Lewis. After a few questions about himself from Jack, Mr. Lewis was asked to identify the songs and was extremely disappointed to learn he’d only scored two out of three, just missing out on winning the BBC mug.
Then it was onto the pupil’s news items, with Eve and Livvey up first, introducing a story about mobile phone addiction. The pupils were very interested in their own addiction to their mobile phones and felt that this was a story that needed to be explored in more depth. The girls interviewed a technology journalist, live on air, who admitted to having his own internet addiction, and also the writer of a book called How To Unplug Your Child. This section of the show ended with Eve and Livvey both agreeing to give up their social networking for a week, to see how they can cope without them!
Alice and Adam were back again next, talking about changes to the curriculum that could see English and Welsh Literature becoming optional in many schools. This story mattered to them because they are about to make their GCSE option choices and are worried about how this could affect their futures. Cowbridge English teacher Mr. Taylor was in the studio to explain the changes and Welsh poet Mike Jenkins was also interviewed by the pupils about what a mistake he thinks the decision is.
Finally, it was on to the pupils’ story about the Cardiff Blues Rugby Academy that is based at the school.Livvey and Eve introduced a package that all the pupils had helped to produce, which involved them recording the boys training and interviewing the school’s Head of Rugby and also some of the school’s players.
So, after what seemed like the quickest two hours ever, the show came to an end and the pupils said their goodbyes.
The whole experience was amazingly eye-opening and it was a real privilege to be invited into the BBC Wales studios and to spend time with a broadcaster who is as well respected as Jason Mohammad. Meeting a genuine Welsh rugby legend in Martyn Williams also helped to make the day one to remember.
You can listen to some clips of our pupils appearing on the Jason Mohammad Show on BBC Radio Wales below.
Go to http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b072nlxp#play to listen to the whole show again using the BBC iPlayer.
Former Wales and Blues flanker Martyn Williams (who has a daughter at Cowbridge) was then in the studio to be interviewed by Jack about the Academy, and also about his predictions for the Wales-England Six Nations match at the weekend.