Winners of the AIT Schools’ Oral History competition announced


Students from Our Lady’s Prep School, Berkshire and Barley Lane Primary School, London have won prizes in the Archives of IT (AIT) schools’ oral history competition for their creations.

The oral history competition, launched in the spring, was an opportunity for primary school students to mimic the job we do at AIT, which is to collect the personal histories of people who have and are doing positive things in the world of technology so other people can learn about the industry and share this information.

So, as part of our educational offer we wanted to see how young students from Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 could take on this concept and record a piece of history from a parent with the theme: How technology has changed.

The results

We were really impressed with the results as they demonstrated the rich information that can be obtained by asking direct questions and felt that the students learnt a lot about what technology their parents used when they were children and also had fun in the process.

For example, year 3 student, Dylan asked his mum: “What tech device was your favourite when you were growing up and why?”

And she replied: “I loved listening to music so my favourite device was the radio and recording Kylie and Madonna songs on my cassettes.”

Cara asked her dad: “How did you feel when you first discovered technology?”

And he replied: “There wasn’t a lot of technology around our house to begin with. We were fortunate to have a colour television and a landline telephone. Whilst I enjoyed watching TV, I didn’t take much notice of these things.

“However, this all changed on Christmas 1985 when my father brought home our first computer. It was a Japanese computer designed by Microsoft and it plugged directly into our TV.

“I remember being captivated by all the little objects called sprites that were moving on the screen. I was also fascinated by the fact that I could control them, play with them or even create them. This device alone got me hooked to technology and shaped my career.”

And Zara-Ann’s mum videoed her conducting the interview and told her about rotary phones and also showed her a restored record player they have in their home.


Both schools have won copies of recent MBE recipient in the King’s Birthday Honours, Beverly Clarke’s series of tech books for children and three students have won £25 book vouchers for the most original entries, following the approval of a judging panel made up of AIT trustees.

Thank you to all those who entered and look out for our next competition, which will be launched in the autumn 2024 term.


The winning entries:

Dylan – Year 3

Cara – Year 3




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