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Learning that ‘Speaking Out Matters’ with Fred & Toca Loca at the Nobel Peace Centre

Learning that ‘Speaking Out Matters’ with Fred & Toca Loca at the Nobel Peace Centre

As we are learning on this trip… sometimes you just get lucky and discover ‘gold dust’ in terms of the perfect place to support your children’s education…. perhaps not academically but in becoming a more well rounded human being.

What an opportunity to visit the Nobel Peace Centre…. its renowned awards are highly prized by the intellectual world in areas that include :- Literature, Medicine/Physiology, Chemistry, Physics and perhaps most importantly Peace.

The first and most important advice is to take the guided tours (2pm&3pm each day) as these brilliantly highlight the crucial areas of the museum and the importance of it’s ongoing work. Both girls were enthralled by our wonderful guide who had that very special gift of making the whole place come alive. That said, the presentation and interactivity of each exhibit is truly astounding and makes you ‘ask more questions when leaving than you came with‘ A brilliant museum for both adults and children alike!

For those travelling with children – they will love the wonderfully illustrated and highly absorbing ‘Fred & Toca Loca’ exhibits… all with easy access but each poses a moral dilemma for children to discuss. This was one of the best examples of us all working together (across the whole trip) as we completed the ‘Speak Out’ children pack. The girls immediately took to this and wrote some poignant messages towards the end which they added to the ‘postcard wall’. Try to spare some time for the gift shop. Brimful of interesting bits and pieces with almost no ‘tat’!! Another novel feature as some museums take alternative approaches

nobel peace centre, oslo

For those wanting to know more ..
The museum’s main exhibit focuses on the work of ‘Nobel Peace Prizewinners‘ in this case the 1936 winner, Carl Von Ossietzky . A pacifist from Germany who opposed the Nazi regime with his one weapon – the power of words. Ossietzky sadly died due to his imprisonment in concentration camps before WW2 even began. Regarded as a traitor/whistleblower, he was highly criticised after publicising an article by Kreiser on German rearmament (he was editor of the ‘Die Weltbuhne‘) He was imprisoned but had the option to escape after his Christmas release. He chose not to oppose from abroad but continue to ‘demonstrate’ from within Germany. Arrested after the burning of the Reichstag in Berlin, he never saw freedom again. His story is incredibly moving and offered everyone real ‘food for thought’ (it clearly divided opinions even in Norway at the time with Knut Hamsun (against) and Sigrid Undset (for) writing passionately about his case.)


The Peace prize is recognised each October (2nd Friday of the month) at precisely 11am when the Norwegian Nobel Committee announces the winners. The current holders are the quartet who support the ‘Tunisian Method‘ after the Arab Springs and achieved a ‘Consensus and Dialogue’ between competing factions. Tunisian peace remains fragile to this day, but it has achieved a new constitution that allows a “Tunisian democracy’ to be sustained… unlike its neighbours (Egypt, Syria, Libya and Yemen)

Who was Alfred Nobel

Alfred Nobel was clearly a huge personality of his times – inventor (of 355 patented designs including dynamite), a friend of creativity and freedom.
​His ‘rags to riches’ story takes in Europe, the US and St Petersburg and centres on a relationship with Bertha Von Suttner the author of ‘Lay down your Arms’ and a true peace activist.

With a 100 factories in 20 countries, and 4 homes in countries including Scotland.. he was perhaps the world’s richest batchelor…

Dying in 1896, his handwritten will left a sizeable fortune to the Nobel Foundation, with the investment income to be split between the 5 new ‘Nobel’ prizes…

To this day, his work is recognised across the world and has identified and recognised the success of so many different struggles such as Apartheid (Mandela/De Klerk) or the work of UNICEF or even children of the girl’s age (Malala Fund)… This powerfully resonated with both girls as too did the Syrian school children accounts alongside the ongoing case with Edward Snowdon

What were our thoughts as we walked away?

We all left with new thoughts and with both girls determined to value what they have as opposed to what they do not have…. a focus on helping others not as fortunate as themselves by speaking out if it matters and on the need to be kind humanitarians who make a positive impact on the world in their future lives…

Not a bad day’s #homeschooling…. I believe we may be indebted to the Nobel Peace Centre for years to come!!! If in Oslo, please do try and visit, you will not regret the time spent here!!!

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About The Author


Ever wanted to pack your bags, just jump in a motorhome and go off and explore Europe as a family? Well, that’s exactly what my family has done since September 2015. Visiting 35 European countries, travelling over 54,000 miles and grabbing over 450 family experiences on the way… enjoying Bobsleigh in Norway, Climbing into Mt Etna in Sicily or Kayaking the River Dordogne.

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