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Inter-generational storytelling workshop challenges stereotypes of ageing

Pupils from Edinburgh's Parkside Primary School meet participants from the Lothian Birth Cohorts to discuss ageing

Participants from the longest-running study of human cognition, the Lothian Birth Cohorts, will share their experiences of ageing with 11-year-old pupils from Edinburgh's dedicated Gaelic School, Bun-sgoil Taobh na Pàirce (Parkside Primary School).

Studies of healthy ageing

The LBCs are two groups of people born in 1921 and 1936 who sat intelligence tests, known as the Scottish Mental Surveys, as 11-year olds. The surveys tested the intelligence of almost every child born in 1921 or 1936 attending school in Scotland in the month of June in those years. Scotland remains the only country in the world to have tested the entire population in this way.

In 1999, Psychology researchers traced and retested over 1600 people who had taken part in the original surveys at age 11. Ever since, for almost 20 years now, the LBCs have been tested every three years – offering unique opportunity to find out why some people's brain and thinking skills age better than others.

Thinking about getting older

After hearing the LBCs stories of getting older, the 11-year old pupils will be encouraged to draw a picture of what they think they will look like when they are older. 

The pupils are the same age as the LBCs were when they sat the Scottish Mental Surveys, so hopefully this connection will provide a starting point for both groups to swap stories and develop a shared understanding of age and getting older

Dr Judy OkelyKnowledge Exchange and Impact Officer at the Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology

Related links

The Lothian Birth Cohorts of 1921 and 1936

Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology