One of my roles as History Leader this year, has been to think carefully about ways to enrich learning so that it is both powerful and meaningful. We have been lucky to have four workshops, this year, from the ‘Drama Hut’ theatre company. During the Autumn term, Year 6 had a workshop on World War Two and Year 2 had a workshop on The Great Fire of London. These workshops have bought History alive, without children having to leave the school site.
This term Year 1 and Year 2 had workshops that made learning fun, active and engaging. History can be quite abstract subject as we study the past and things children themselves have not experienced. In these workshops we explored events, beyond living memory and were able to bring History to life; which is always exciting. Meeting significant people from the past ‘in the flesh’ helps provides children with concrete experiences.
Year one had a workshop on ‘Florence Nightingale’ and Year two had a visit from ‘Sally the Explorer’.
Below are some quotes from some Year 1 children about the Florence Nightingale workshop:
“The Scutari hospital was really smelly, but I loved all the acting!” – William
“I liked the part where we closed our eyes and went into the past” – Vivaan
” I liked that Florence told us how the soldiers were getting better.” – Ryan
” I liked the part where I was pretending to be Florence Nightingale when we were reading a poem.” – Luca
Year two visited Ancient America, Egypt as well as China and Latin America. Sally made the possibility of becoming an explorer and historian a real reality for the children.
The workshops sparked curiosity amongst the children whose new ambitions for the future now lie in History and uncovering truths about previous civilisations. Moments like this are to be celebrated and remind us all the value and importance of education. This spark of interest makes our jobs as teachers so satisfying.
We are thankful to the Drama Hut workshop and all of the parents and families who supported us to ensure these events could take place.
We are looking forward to inviting the Drama Hut back soon for more active learning in History and Geography.
Mr Beach (Y2 Teacher and History Leader)