Mary Seacole – KQ3 – What was Mary’s greatest achievement and how do we know? NEW

The focus here is mainly on the evidence for Mary’s achievement. This is important as she was a more-or-less forgotten figure for 200 years. So how do we know that claims about Mary’s life are true? The skill of finding evidence to back up statements made is a really important one. The core activity Prove it! works wonders and is fun and active too.

Note that some images, such as the one of Mary on the battlefield, are not what we would call primary sources (created at the time it depicts), but are there to help pupils get confidence in the activity. Its worth noting that this is one of the few book illustrations that shows her, accurately, wearing her bonnet, rather than a later nurse’s uniform, which she never had of course, because she was never a nurse!

Step 1

Explain that the pupils are going to be History Detectives. Lots of things have been said about Mary, not all of them true. In order to work out if they are true, we have to find the evidence to back it up-rather like a detective does. So are the children smart enough to prove that the 10 given statements

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