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Learning with pleasure in the castle of knowledge

From EPSA - European Public Sector Award

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The Kids’ Castle is a collection of places dedicated to reading, playing, discovering and learning. It results from the interaction between the ‘The Magic Hawk’ Library (Il Falco Magico), the Recreation Centre and the Theatre of Light. Kids’ Castle areas are situated in the heart of Carpi town centre, in the North-Western wing, Square and Courtyards of the Pio Palace within the most important historical building in the town. These spaces offer a whole range of activities to young users and their families, thus making the most of the Palace itself and integrating within the overall development of the cultural proposals supported by the town Administration.

This project is an example of excellence in the Italian and European context and is often visited and subject to enquiry by numerous specialists in the field, both public and private. Having cultivated the experience of many illustrious examples, the Kids’ Castle distinguishes itself for its ability to stimulate each child’s personal pathway towards knowledge and for the capacity to renew itself in time whilst maintaining both identity and continuity.

‘The Magic Hawk’ Library was relocated to its present position in 2002. It is an important reference point for promotional reading activities, which are aimed at children and youngsters: it has cosy spaces to sit in, offers a rich selection of reading material and promotes numerous initiatives, which range from animated reading sessions to exhibitions of works by children’s book illustrators, from meetings with authors to workshops on children’s stories. The ‘Recreation Centre’, which was transferred to the Castle in 2006, undertakes an important pedagogic and social role through the use of play and caters for both babies and children with various facilities and with its wide selection of toys. A key element to this room is the Tree House: a multi-level structure, with a staircase, rooms, balconies and a little nook to hide in. The ‘Theatre of Light’, was inaugurated in 2006. It is an entirely innovative space dedicated to this splendid element, which children can explore by following various itineraries, from light tricks and shadows to scientific experiments. The project has been developed in collaboration with the scientific museum Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie-Cité des Enfants in Paris. In addition to these interactive elements, various objects and instruments are available such as kaleidoscopes, multi-coloured gels, luminous screens and optical effects to create experiments with light and colours.

Thanks to this project, the Palace has been given back to the town and to all those who wish to visit it. The Castle gives the children and youngsters of our territory the possibility to be active ‘citizens’, to have a place where they can be free to come and go, free of charge, and where they can share emotions and experiences whilst socialising.

Award info
Award category: public service delivery
Award type: submission
Award year: 2009
Project type
Sector: Sports, youth, culture and art
Type of activity: public-private partnerships
Keywords: Knowledge, creativity, children, education
Short English description: The Castle gives the children and youngsters of our territory the possibility to be active ‘citizens’, to have a place where they can be free to come and go, free of charge, and where they can share emotions and experiences whilst socialising
Further information
Organisation: Comune di Carpi
Other applicants:
Homepage:
Level of government: local level
Size of organisation: >100
Number of people involved:
Country: Italy
EU membership: EU member
Language code: en
Start date:
End date:


Learning with pleasure in the castle of knowledge (41.1966014° N, 14.8462706° E)
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