Mary anningGrowing in popularity as a strong alternative to Grace Darling and Florence Nightingale, studying Mary Anning at KS1 offers some clear advantages.

Not only is she a remarkable talent but she also achieved much of her famous work at an age not so far removed from the children who learn about her. She is a great role model for young girls, being so accomplished in a such a heavily male-dominated world.

This topic is highly suitable for Y2 pupils and serves as a great example of a significant young woman achieving an amazing amount in a short time in what was a man’s world. At a time when women rarely ventured into the realms of science this young girl took the world by storm. As an inspiration for young girls to think what might be possible in their lives, this life story has a lot of the ingredients to spark pupils’ interest: dinosaurs, exciting finds, managing to sell her fossils in hard times, and a dog of course!

Pupils have lots of opportunities for hands-on activities, working with fossils, as well as consideration of historical evidence and coming up with compelling reasons why we still remember this young girl’s achievements 200 years later. Recent press coverage of attempts by children to honour her relatively neglected memory gives pupils a connection between past and present and the opportunity to express their admiration in the devising ways to commemorate her remarkable life.


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Mary Anning Expert Advice
Mary Anning – KQ1 – Why do we remember Mary Anning?

This introductory session attempts to place Mary’s life in a broader context of time and place and to whet pupils’…

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Mary anning fossils
Mary Anning – KQ2 – What did Mary do in her life that was so special?

Pupils move from the sequencing of the major events of Mary’s life to a more sophisticated understanding of which of…

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Mary Anning – KQ3 – What sort of person was Mary that helped her to succeed in a man’s world?

This a much shorter enquiry than the others, and comprises just three short activities Step 1 Having recapped the story…

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elizabeth philpot
Mary Anning – KQ4 – Which other people were important in Mary’s life and why?

This activity is an interesting way of getting pupils to think about Mary’s life but in a non-narrative way. Instead…

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mary anning curiosity
Mary Anning – KQ5 – How do we know about Mary’s actions which happened so long ago?

The main activity in this session is called Prove it! A number of pieces of evidence from Mary’s time are…

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fossil shop
Mary Anning – KQ6 – How and why should Mary Anning be remembered? Have your say.

In Lyme Regis they are going to improve their museum dedicated to Mary Anning. It will cost a lot of…

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Why should Mary Anning be remembered? Have your say. SMART TASK

In Lyme Regis they are going to improve their Museum dedicated to Mary Anning. It will cost a lot of…

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