The Victorians

A popular unit of study in Key Stage 2 has in the past been the Victorians. It is possible to continue to study the Victorians through either a local study or through a unit of study beyond 1066, although the emphasis now shifts to the Victorians representing a turning point. Given that so much reform and industrial change took place during this period, turning points are not difficult to find. In this section, you will find articles and resources to help you to plan to teach the Victorian period as a turning point. 

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  • A Project on Working Class Education in the Victorian Period

    Article

    In the third year at London Metropolitan University, history B.ED students research and prepare a resource about an aspect of life in C19th Britain for use with their chosen age group. Nicky made a book, which contained a large number of pictures and suggestions about how to use them. She...

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  • A Victorian Christmas

    Multipage Article

    The Historical Association In Alliance With Association for Language Learning. Cross-Curricular Unit: Year 5/6 French and History. A Victorian Christmas.

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  • A living timeline

    Article

    The problem Pupils' background knowledge - Tudors and Victorians Here at Knebworth House, primary school children visit us to enhance their learning of both the Tudors and the Victorians, in particular; both are popular periods to study within the primary curriculum and both have special significance for us at Knebworth....

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  • All the fun of the fair! Key Stage 1 – Beyond living memory

    Article

    Alf Wilkinson outlines three activities looking at fairs past and present. We all enjoy a visit to the fair, don’t we? There’s always a bit of a buzz when the fair comes to town. In my village it arrives just in time for Feast Weekend, in the summer holidays. The rides...

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  • Arthur Wharton: the world’s first professional black footballer

    Article

    Schools are now looking to extend their study of significant individuals away from many of the conventional ones.  This article looks at a lesser known individual, Arthur Wharton, which could make a good choice for teachers wanting to tap into pupils’ interest.  Arthur Wharton was the world’s first black professional...

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  • Brunel and Clifton Suspension Bridge

    Article

    Please note: this free resource pre-dates the 2014 National Curriculum. For a more recent resource, see our Primary scheme of work on Brunel. The focus for this literacy hour lesson was a picture, used as a text. The literacy hour genre was non-fiction. In it we studied a specific Victorian, the engineer...

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  • Census 2021: using the census in the history classroom

    Article

    As we approach the next census in March 2021, we are reminded of what a rich historical source the census is. For historians, using the census can shine a light on particular people and places – a snapshot in time. Big stories can be told through a sharp local lens...

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  • Children in Victorian Britain: Down the Mine

    Article

    This resource is free to everyone. For access to hundreds of other high-quality resources by primary history experts along with free or discounted CPD and membership of a thriving community of teachers and subject leaders, join the Historical Association today Please note: this free resource pre-dates the 2014 National Curriculum....

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  • Children in Victorian Britain: Henry at boarding school

    Article

    Please note: this free resource pre-dates the 2014 National Curriculum. For more recent resources see: Victorians (Primary History article, 2014) Scheme of work: Sarah Forbes Bonetta Scheme of work: Brunel In this lesson children pursued an historical enquiry, raising questions and using original sources. They gained an understanding of conditions in early...

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  • Diversity, ethnicity and the Victorians

    Article

    Editorial note: Alison raises crucial issues about pupils developing a sense of identity in a multi-racial environment through the medium of history. History provides a sense of belonging to all pupils if we acknowledge the rich origins of modern society's multiethnic routes - by origin, we are all immigrants. The...

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  • Dora Thewlis: Mill girl activist

    Article

    Article from Primary History 79 Dora Thewlis was born in 1890 in Yorkshire to a family of textile workers employed in the mills around the Huddersfield Canal. She followed her mother and elder siblings into the mill at the age of 10, earning around £1 a week. Dora’s family, and especially...

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  • Elementary Education in the Nineteenth Century

    Article

    All schemes for education involve some consideration of the surrounding society, its existing structure and how it will-and should-develop. Thus the interaction of educational provision and institutions with patterns of employment, social mobility and political behaviour are fascinatingly complex. The spate of valuable local studies emphasizes this complexity and makes...

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  • Exploring empire, artefacts and local history

    Article

    This article introduces us to the Colonial Countryside Project. Many of the sites we visit, especially the great country houses and stately homes, have long been visited by children. They are often fascinated by both the buildings and the history associated with them. However, there is a growing recognition that...

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  • Female migration to Australia

    Article

    The Hyde Park Barracks, in Sydney, has a layered history. Designed by Francis Greenway (a convict architect) it was built between 1817 and 1819 by convict labour. Over the next three decades an estimated 50,000 male convicts passed through – some stayed for years, others days or only hours before...

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  • From Sail to Steam

    Article

    From the time when primitive man first went adrift on a bundle of reeds or learnt to balance himself on a floating log, to the days where his descendants, no more than a few generations ago, raced scrambling aloft to trim the towering sails of a full-rigged ship, the skill...

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  • Happy 200th birthday Florence Nightingale!

    Article

    2020 is undoubtedly going to be an important year in the nursing world and is a significant historical anniversary. The World Health Organisation has declared it the ‘Year of the Nurse and Midwife’ in part because Florence Nightingale, the famous ‘Lady with the Lamp’, will be celebrating her 200th birthday...

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  • Helping schools discover historic Churches

    Article

    Since 1969 the Churches Conservation Trust has been caring for churches no longer needed for regular worship. The 325 retired churches in its care contain over a thousand years of history, religion, art and architecture to be discovered, investigated and enjoyed by pupils and teachers alike. From Saxon simplicity to...

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  • Historical Enquiries and Interpretations

    Multipage Article

    This is the first of 5 sessions arising from the 2005 KS2-KS3 History Transition Project: Transition training session 1: Historical Enquiries & Interpretations Transition training session 2: Using ICT in the teaching of history Transition training session 3: Extended writing in history Transition training session 4: Joan of Arc -...

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  • How can old advertisements be used in the primary classroom?

    Article

    Advertising is a central part of our everyday lives. There are few ways to escape it and it has a long pedigree. It has long been recognised that it can help sell products through the power of the punch line or the visual image. Trade cards appeared as early as...

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  • How cruel were the Victorians?

    Multipage Article

    Please note: this resource pre-dates the 2014 National Curriculum. This unit centres on Victorian crime and punishment. This resource is free to everyone. For access to hundreds of other high-quality resources by primary history experts along with free or discounted CPD and membership of a thriving community of teachers and...

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