Snack brand Twiglets is going into 10,000 schools in a bid to broaden its appeal to children. The move represents one of the most sophisticated efforts at sponsorship of educational materials undertaken by a brand owner.
The project has been developed by advertising agency McCann-Erickson to exploit its Twiglet Zone campaign for Jacob’s Bakeries.
Working with educationalists, it has developed two programmes to act as teaching aids, or as part of lessons, to fit in with the National Curriculum for children aged between seven and 11, or 11 and 14.
The first pack employs the Twiglet Zone competition to encourage creative writing. But the second looks at how advertising is created and tries to weave that into course work. The project is estimated to have cost 100,000.
“Schools need to find new resources,” says McCann-Erickson integrated communications director Harry Marsland. “They now have to involve the outside world more than they used to, to broaden the scope for educational packages. However, if a programme does not work educationally, it is a non-starter.”
Marsland denies the project is exploiting children.
“If the agency had produced the package perhaps people could say that, but it was produced with people who create educational material and contribute to the National Curriculum,” says Marsland.