Leicester Law School

Developing literacy with children in key stage 2

Undergraduate law students design, develop and deliver interactive workshops for schools. Each workshop was designed to develop children’s ‘legal literacy’.

About the project

This project, funded by a teaching development grant from the Higher Education Academy (HEA), responded to three of the HEA’s call areas; education for sustainable development, employability, and students as partners. It was carried out in partnership with St Peter’s Primary Academy, whose head teacher, Ralph Wood, is a University of Leicester Law graduate.


  • Assess the impact on the learning experience of students
  • Assess whether it is possible to incorporate this form of activity within the undergraduate curriculum
  • Assess whether it is possible to create a sustainable model for use in the future, with new groups of students and a wider number of schools


The most positive outcomes of the project relate to the students’ development of transferable skills, a reported increase in confidence among the student participants, and to the benefits of group work. The weakest area was the demonstration and development of legal research skills.

Undergraduate students took part in two design workshops before continuing to work independently in teams creating materials for use in school. These activities were carried within the remit of the Leicester Award for Employability scheme, designed to develop employability skills.

The final part of the project involved 64 children visiting the University. Here they helped to assess student presentations, took a tour of the campus, engaged in an interactive lecture and a story-telling session before being presented with certificates acknowledging their part in the project.


The Law Students identified five key areas to explore with the children using a variety of methods. Students 'innovative' workshop delivery:

  • Animal Rights
  • Human Rights
  • Criminal Responsibility
  • Duty of Care
  • Defamation

Further information

For further information or questions regarding the project, please contact Dr Dawn Watkins, dawn.watkins@le.ac.uk or 0116 223 1082 (project leader) or Dr Maribel Canto-Lopez, micl1@le.ac.uk or 0116 252 2363 (project co-ordinator).

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