Launching the Titanic enquiry, drawing on pupils’ prior knowledge

What do we already know about the Titanic and what can we work out from a picture? KQ1

This lesson’s activities are designed to release any prior knowledge pupils might have about this well known story.  By focusing on clear and detailed illustrations pupils quickly develop subject specific vocabulary and gain confidence to articulate their ideas in the enquiry.

Step 1

An interesting starting point is to show the front cover of a children’s information book about the Titanic (provided as slide 2 of the PowerPoint) which is partly obscured deliberately to encourage closer looking.  Click on the box in the centre to reveal the full image.  Can pupils work out what the topic might be about?  Slide 3 reveals all.  Now show pupils another image on slide 6 to release prior knowledge and to develop vocabulary.  What can we see happening in this picture?  Focus on words like rescue, lifeboat, liner, sinking.

Pupils do this by playing post-it challenge. Put them in groups of 4 each group with a black and white copy of the picture from slide 4.  Give each group 8 post-it notes.  Group 1 plays group 2, group 3 plays group 4, group 5 plays

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