It’s been a long wait but it was worth it.
When we took this photograph during the 2012 Olympics, we were disappointed to discover that the ArcelorMittal Orbit wouldn’t be formally opened to visitors until Spring 2014.
We’ve now had the opportunity to revisit and re-photograph both this incredible structure and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park – with its appropriate tag of “No Ordinary Park”.
We strongly recommend a visit to the Orbit. We especially recommend this as a school visit for children. It’s quite spectacular – not only for incredible views from its observation rooms but also for the entire experience and the way it’s been put together.
It was pleasing that on the day we were there we had the Orbit more or less to ourselves, but disheartening that groups of school children weren’t there in numbers.
We’ll publish a set of curriculum grids in a subsequent post, but for now here’s a quick summary of the curriculum areas that could be covered through a visit to the Orbit and the Olympic Park:
- English – composition; real events, poems, drafting
- Maths – measurement, geometry, calculations
- Science – habitats, materials comparison, light and shadows, forces
- History – of London, settlements, of the Olympics, local history
- Geography – built environment, changes of land-use, development of a city, settlement
- Design and Technology – engineering, construction, evaluating existing construction,
- Art and Design – drawing using range of media, photography, sketching
- Citizenship – national, regional and ethnic identities, altruism
- Computing – search technologies, design and creation
- Languages – signs in the park, languages heard
- Music – recalling and recording sounds, musical compositions from experience
- PE – outdoor activities, teamwork
- PSHEE – working together, healthy lifestyles, money, roles and responsibilities
Note also that local residents receive a discount and all tickets purchased are also an annual pass.
A Design and Technology dream.
Study in science: A range of materials
Geographical changing landscapes: Copper Box, playgrounds, river walks and Hackney Marshes.
New societies, new neighbourhoods under construction: The working citizen in Canary Wharf.
Perspectives in art.
The remodelling of the Olympic Stadium: for football, athletics and concerts.
History and geography in a vast panorama. One of earth’s megacities.
Angles and measurements in every view.
Fitness, fun & healthy living: Zaha Hadid’s Aquatic Centre is now open to the public.
New energy generation, new walkways, new perspectives.
A new vista is a great stimulus for thinking & writing.
Still building, still growing – a view capturing Canary Wharf and the City.
Memories of phenomenal athletic achievements: Inspiration for the future?
A closer look at Sir Anish Kapoor’s design.
Take a walk down the stairs and listen to the soundscapes of the East End of London, played through a series of speakers.
More perspectives – a gift to mathematicians and artists.
We were fortunate to see the Orbit in its full glory, in bright sunshine and with a perfect backdrop.
A healthy walk down the 200+ steps of the Orbit.
And if you’re exhausted by all the exercise, and overwhelmed by everything you’ve seen, you can relax on these wooden sun loungers, placed along the walkway near the Orbit, overlooking the River Lea.
Price reductions for the Orbit experience are available to residents of the ‘Olympic boroughs’. Admission to the Olympic Park is of course completely free. The nearest stations are Stratford and Hackney Wick.
Enjoy also the miles of walkways and cycleways, as well as the cycle circuits and the velodrome. Don’t miss the riverside views and wildlife, and the other sports facilities. There are several inexpensive cafes and snack bars around the park.