History Week 2017
‘History week’ 27th February – 3rd March 2017
Last week Beaconsfield Primary School celebrated ‘History week’ to celebrate the official opening of the new school building. As our ‘old’ building (now 109 years old!) was built in the “Victorian Style”, classes held a dress-up day with a Victorian Era theme on Wednesday 1st March. On that day pupils experienced lessons in the Victorian style in addition to a variety of activities including cooking, sewing and dance.
During the whole week KS1 classes learnt about Queen Victoria, life of rich and poor children in Victorian Britain as well as Victorian homes and inventions. KS2 classes analysed Victorian architecture, conditions in the factories, population growth and how the school life has changed over the past 120 years.
Year 6 wrote diary entries in role as a Victorian child about their everyday school experience. It could be an extremely unpleasant experience!
Another miserable day. I awoke to the sound of clanging metal- Tom was playing with his toy train again. Wearily, I shifted my blanket to the side and then went to splash my face with water. Rubbing my sleep-filled eyes, I walked down the stairs to see what mother was preparing for breakfast-bread and some tea. After filling my stomach with something warm, I dressed up for school. Dejectedly, I trudged to the place that contained the cane-wielding Miss Bailey - a dragon who could breathe fire onto the palm of my hands.
A blanket of mist covered the fields on my way to school. As the sun appeared over the horizon, the grey stone building of Lockwood School loomed into vision. Other reluctant faces poured into the playground. I spotted a purple bruise on George’s face; his dad must have lost his temper again. On the other side stood weeping William; he sobbed continuously but I couldn’t figure out what happened. Mother told me yesterday that his baby brother has been sick lately.
All of a sudden, the bell rang. Everyone ran to their lines like a swarm of flies, boys on the right and girls on the left. I entered the class room and there stood the intimidating figure of Miss Bailey. Avoiding her gaze, I walked over to my desk and stood with my back as straight as I could. As my head rose, I discovered her glaring at children as if she was selecting her prey.
A few moments later, she chose her first victim of the day. It was George. He sat down without asking for her permission – a terrible sin in her eyes. I shut my eyes in anticipation of what we knew was going to happen next and “WHOOSH!” A scream echoed across the room as the cane struck his hand.
“You may be seated,” instructed Mrs Bailey calmly as George returned whimpering to his place. We began the day with arithmetic. As the other children chanted their times tables in unison, I allowed my eyes to drift to the portrait of the proud and stern face of her majesty, Queen Victoria, the Empress of India, who stared loftily down at us from the frame. The map on the classroom wall shows in blood red the countries of our empire. They say the sun never sets on the British Empire and I feel a desperate urge for adventure and exploration. I want to see these great lands for myself!
“Charles! Pay attention!” I am jolted back to reality by the shrill voice of Miss Bailey. Adventure will have to wait as right now my only mission is to avoid the stinging pain of Miss Bailey’s anger.