One of the activities you may have tried was looking at some Victorian luggage and using its contents like clues to work out which suitcase belonged to which person.
KS1 Using the outline of a picture of a suitcase, children could draw some of their favourite things e.g. a favourite toy, book, piece of clothing, meal etc. As a class they could then play the game of seeing whether the other children in the class can use these clues to help them guess whose luggage they might be looking at.
KS2 The children could make a suitcase book with pictures and writing on each page dedicated to a favourite thing e.g. clothing, book… By looking at each others books, can the children guess whose luggage they are looking at?
The aim of the activity is to show how clues can tell us about people from the past.
Who am I?
Either by drawing pictures of themselves in costume or by using photographs taken during the visit of themselves dressing up, children could write a character profile of themselves as the character they became when they dressed up. What might their character’s name have been? How old were they? Did they have a job? If so, what was their job? Were they a rich person or a poor person? How did they spend their days? Did they have any family? If so, who? The aim of this activity is to consider how costume/dress can tell us a lot about a person from the past.
Using activity sheet 2.5 children could describe a day in the life of one of the characters from Milestones – either one of the mannequins or one of the real life costumed characters they might have met on their visit. They would need to consider everything they know or could infer about the person from their dress, their job, where they live etc …
Poor Victorian children
Most of the children will probably have seen the little boy selling matches. The children could write a diary account of a day in his life, thinking about what he is doing and how he might be feeling standing on the cobbles all day. What would it be like for him if it was the middle of winter and pouring down with rain or snow? Why isn’t he at school? If the children are studying the QCA unit: What was it like for children living in Victorian Britain?, this would help them to consider other jobs that poor children might have had aside from working in a factory or a mine.
Using the experience of being in a Victorian street as a stimulus, brainstorm ideas relating to:
Compare this to a modern day street in the town where you live. Use the ideas collected to write a story or a poem, or do some drama.