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BBC School Radio
City of license Bridge House, MediaCityUK, Salford, M50 2BH
Broadcast area United Kingdom
Repeaters BBC
Format
Affiliations BBC Radio 4, BBC Learning
Owner BBC
Webcast Podcasts
Website BBC School Radio

BBC School Radio is a division of the BBC providing audio learning resources for primary schools in the United Kingdom.

Structure

In 2011 School Radio moved from its home on Wood Lane in London up to the newly built BBC Bridge House at MediaCityUK, also home to BBC Bitesize, BBC Teach, and BBC Children's (CBeebies and CBBC). A small School Radio team is based in Scotland, producing programmes exclusively for Scotland's Curriculum for Excellence.

Broadcasts took place in the middle of the night (starting at 3.00) on Radio 4 Digital from Tuesdays to Thursdays. Programmes could be recorded under the Educational Recording Agency copyright laws, but podcasts are freely available, online and on the BBC iPlayer Radio app.

On 28 June 2018 School Radio ended its run on BBC Radio, instead becoming an online streaming and podcast download exclusive service, with content uploaded throughout the year, rather than following strict broadcast schedules.

Content

Content is divided into twelve subjects:

  • Collective Worship
  • Curriculum for Excellence (programmes made exclusively for the Scottish curriculum).
  • Drama
  • Dance
  • Early Learning
  • English
  • Geography
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Modern Foreign Languages
  • Music
  • PSHE - Citizenship

The English section includes a selection of abridgements of classic stories told by celebrity voices, including The Wind in the Willows, read by Bernard Cribbins, and The Tales of Hans Christian Andersen, read by Anne-Marie Duff, Sir Derek Jacobi, David Tennant and Penelope Wilton, amongst others.

Pre-recorded programmes were previously available on CD or DVD from BBC Schools' Broadcast Recordings, but these were eventually phased out in favour of online podcast versions.

Former programmes

  • In the News - produced by Radio News and School Radio in the early 1980s for ages 9 to 12
  • Wavelength - youth culture programme, with content borrowed from Radio 1 in the 1980s
  • Talks to Sixth Forms - introduced in 1935, and had distinguished speakers such as G. K. Chesterton, T. S. Eliot and E. M. Forster
  • How Things Began - a natural history programme broadcast in 1943
  • Make Up Your Mind - discussion programme for sixth formers
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