KidZania, the place where education and entertainment meet

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From left to right: Xavier López Ancona (KidZania, President); Urbano (KidZania RightZKeeper); Simon Presswell (BETT, Managing Director); Grania Chesterton (BETT, Event Director); Asheesh Advani (Junior Achievement, CEO); Dr. Ger Graus OBE (KidZania, Director of Education).

KidZania, one of the fastest growing edutainment franchises in the world, has been committed to be a rich learning environment for kids aged 2 to 14, since its foundation in 1997. As part of this commitment, KidZania has carried out extensive research in collaboration with Havas to learn more about children’s aspirations and the activities they prefer depending on their age, gender and socio-economic level.

So far, this Barometer of Children’s Aspirations has been conducted in the United Kingdom (2015) and in Mexico (2016) with anonymized data about children’s first choice of activity, collected from the wristbands they wear for security at KidZania facilities. In both countries, samples consider only information from public and private school visits to KidZania, during a year.

As Dr. Ger Graus OBE, Director of Education of KidZania have stated: “If we get to know our children better, we might provide better curricula that suits children rather than the system”. Due to the relevance of these efforts to better understand kids, representatives of KidZania’s Global Team gathered in a panel at BETT, international show which focuses in creating a better future by transforming education worldwide. This year’s, 5th LATAM edition was hosted at Centro CitiBanamex in Mexico City, where 120 speakers shared their impressions regarding education to an audience of more than 600 people.

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KidZania participated at BETT LATAM in a panel to present the main findings from their Barometer of Children’s Aspirations and discuss the “next steps” that need to be taken in terms of education and career awareness in Latin America. This panel was made up of: Xavier López Ancona, President of KidZania; Dr. Ger Graus OBE, Director of Education at KidZania; and Dr. Asheesh Advani, member of KidZania’s “Think-Tank” and President and CEO of Junior Achievement (JA) worldwide, NGO devoted to create pathways for employability and job creation for young people in over 100 countries.

With a sample of 270,000 kids from the three facilities of KidZania in Mexico and 61,000 kids in the United Kingdom, results from this Barometer were quite similar despite the economic, political and social disparity between both countries. This similarity suggests that kids are somehow educated in the same way or exposed to similar stimuli from the age of 4 to 14.

 

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