Lesson 2 

 

Learning Objective: Use a range of sources to collect, analyse and evaluate a period in history

Knowledge, skills and understanding covered in the lesson

  • Be able to select and record information relevant to a historical topic  

  • Be able to find out about aspects of the past from a range of sources  

  • Understand that historical sources can be different from and contradict one another and that they reflect their context of time, place and viewpoint  

 

Lesson Overview: Children will analyse historical sources using photos to gather evidence of what life was like in Victorian times.

 

Starter questions

  • Why are there not that many photos of Victorian times?
    Allow children to discuss ideas
     

TEACHER NOTE:  Photography did not become available for the mass-market until 1901. Even then, you needed to be able to afford the camera, film and film processing & printing. Comparison with the use of mobile phones today. Can take a photo at any time of day and view the photo immediately.

 

Whole class input: As a class analyse a photo together, modelling thinking aloud how to ask historical questions to understand the past.

Use one colour post-it notes or pens to record what can be seen in the photo.

 

Suggested questions

  • What can we find out? What can’t we find out?

  • What can you see? What can be inferred what from what we see?

  • What might be happening in the photo?

  • Are there people in the photo? who are they? What are they doing? Where are they? What might they be thinking? 

  • How might they be feeling? What is their life like?

 

Use another colour post-it or pen to write down what sounds might be heard in the photo

  • What sounds could you hear if you were in the photo? 

  • People talking? Jobs being completed, i.e. laundry? Equipment being used? Transport? Sounds in the street? 

Main Activity: Students in groups to analyse two photos

  • Use one colour post-it notes or pens to record what can be seen the photo

  • Use another colour post-it or pen to write down what sounds might be heard in the photo

Materials

A4 Photos, preferably printed onto A3 sheets, giving students space to annotate the photo, available to download here.

Post-it notes or pens in two colours
 

Class Feedback

After the children have had enough time discuss both photos, ask the children to feedback their thoughts and discuss as a class. 

Sentence stems should be provided to help the children structure their findings.

 

  • I notice that… this tells me that the people…

  • In this image there is … This makes me think…

  • I believe there would have been sounds of … because…

  • I can infer from the picture that the children would have … 

  • I have noticed that the children are… This leads me to believe…

  • The children look like they are feeling… I know this because…
     

Plenary

Can we rely on these sources and the information gathered today to inform us about what life was like for Victorian children living in Deptford?

Allow children to discus and then sum up that historical sources can be different from and contradict one another. Sources reflect their context of time, place and viewpoint of the photographer and the viewer. 
 

Extension ideas

  • Children could act out the photographs taking on roles of the children in the images to create an extension of the scene.

  • Children could use instruments to create the sounds they would have been able to hear in the images.

  • Children could write a short script of what was said between the characters in the photographs.

For further examples of photos of children in Victorian times, see the Children’s Society archive: Hidden Lives Revealed  http://www.hiddenlives.org.uk/photographs/