Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Historical Handbags

Firstly, I must confess to 'magpie-ing' the idea for this project from here. However, as I teach in a Welsh school we decided that our Year 7 project should focus on Welsh heroes rather than heroes in general. The project involved pupils choosing a Welsh hero, researching their importance and then creating a historical handbag to educate people about their chosen icon. The project details were outlined in this document which was given to pupils:

It is also worth noting here that before undertaking this project pupils had spent 4 weeks (6 lessons) learning about key historical themes/ concepts such as sources, bias, interpretation and chronology. The idea was that they could use their skills/ understanding and apply them to their Welsh heroes project. 

The response from the pupils was absolutely brilliant. Not only did they take complete ownership of their projects but they kept stopping me on the corridor to ask if I knew this or that about their chosen hero. It soon became apparent that I knew very little about Lady Charlotte Guest (technically not Welsh), John Charles and Saint David, amongst many many others! 

Some of the finished articles looked like this:


Whilst I was really pleased with the both the process and the outcome of the project I would make a few changes for next year:
  1. Be a bit 'tighter' with the success criteria. There were, admittedly, too many Tom Jones' Katherine Jenkins' for my liking. I might even change it to include people who are no longer alive. 
  2. Ensure there is enough time at the end of the project to allow for some meaningful feedback/ feedforward. Originally, I had planned to create a 'museum' with all of the handbags where pupils would walk around the class and leave constructive feedback for their peers. As they are placed in sets after half term this didn't happen which was really disappointing as I know the pupils were really keen to do this. We did create a display of the pupils' work though to showcase the best handbags. 
  3. Work more closely with the ICT department and my wonderful colleagues (@skophillips and @sddavies24) on the multimedia element of the project. 

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