Top tales this term

 Bellas birthday postcard from Tommy

Bella's War

As we remember 70 years since the anniversary of VE Day, Bella's War gives a voice to those on the Home Front waiting for the safe return of loved ones at war.

A postcard arrives from France with birthday greetings:  Bella's husband, Tommy, was one of the 1000s who went over in the days after D Day.  As she waits for news, Bella reflects on her life at home; a life filled with children, both her own and 2 evacuees, and her work to support the war effort.  We also hear brief snatches from Tommy as he writes those postcards home.

Bella's War is supported by a handling session with real and replica materials including photographs, artefacts and archive material.  It encourages pupils to consider, and ask questions about, life in WWII. The session concludes with pupils writing Bella's postcard back to Tommy.

Suitable for KS2.  Supports NC History work on 'a study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils' chronological knowledge beyond 1066', particularly 'a significant turning point in British history'

Sessions last 1 hour


 Northern Saints


Tales of the Northern Saints

Who were Edwin, Oswald, Aidan, Hild, Cuthbert, Bede and Wilfrid and why are they so important to the Christian heritage of the North East? 

Tales of the Northern Saints introduces pupils to each saint through stories and handling activities.  Pupils are encouraged to consider what a saint is and to explore the impact of early Christianity on the region and the Northern Saints' continuing influence today.

Tales of the Northern Saints is supported by a handling sessions with real and replica artefacts, (including a page of a real medieval manuscript), the oppportunity to write using quill pens, and the opportunity to hear some of the sounds from the time.  A writing activity encourages pupils to reflect on the legacy of the Northern Saints and imagine what their own legacies might be.

Suitable for KS2.  Supports RE syllabus work on Northern Saints and NC History work on 'Britain's settlement by Anglo-Saxons and Scots'

Sessions last 1½ to 2 hours

(This activity can also be adapted to support Roman Catholic RE syllabus work on Northern Saints for KS1 - contact me for details)


 Pilgrim Tales

Pilgrim Tales

What is pilgrimage and why do Christians travel to sacred places?  These and other questions will be explored as pupils hear tales from pilgrims both past and present.

A handling session, using real and replica artefacts, encourages pupils to consider the importance of pilgrimage in the Christian faith, before making their own pilgrim badge.

Suitable for KS2.  Supports RE syllabus work on Christianity, particularly Christian pilgrimage.

Sessions last 1 hour



Tales of the Anglo-Saxons

Who was King Edwin? How did the Anglo-Saxons become Christians and why should we not call the period the 'Dark Ages'?

Hear tales of Anglo-Saxon saints and kings, learn about their culture through handling real and replica artefacts, take part in a range of hands-on activities and discover how an Anglo-Saxon monk wrote the first History book of England - and knew the world was round!

Choose from a range of hands-on activities including: seeing a real medieval manuscript fragment then writing using a quill pen; learning the skills of an archaeologist by examining an Anglo-Saxon "burial" and recording the grave finds; learning to use aerial photographs to identify Anglo-Saxon building remains; creating a simple woven band using drop weights; studying Anglo-Saxon carvings and creating your own inhabited vine scroll.

Tales of the Anglo-Saxons offers the opportunity for pupils to build a vibrant chronology, think critically, weigh evidence and develop perspective and judgement.  The session draws from contemporary documents (Bede's Ecclesiastical History and the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles), modern day writing and archaeological evidence to encourage pupils to select and organise historical information and develop an understanding of historical knowledge gathered from a range of sources.

Suitable for KS2.  Supports NC History work on 'Britain's settlement by Anglo-Saxons and Scots', particularly Anglo-Saxon invasions, settlements and kingdoms, Anglo-Saxon art and culture and Christian conversion. 

Sessions last 1½ to 2 hours depending on activities chosen and to suit individual schools.