Using artefacts to help children’s historical understanding at Key Stage 1

Since the early 90s, artefacts have become increasingly available either to purchase or to loan.  Many firms offer useful replicas and schools have built up their own small collections on certain themes, such as washday and schools in the past, focusing on the smaller items!!

The issues regarding teaching using artefacts have now changed. No longer a question of How can we get them?; the main issue is ‘What do we do with them when we have them?’   You will find a file containing a range of great strategies which are crying out to be used.  Your skill will be selecting the best one for your purposes. Most of them are self-explanatory, but in case they are not, supplementary details will be added on each over the next few months.

Also available for you soon will be a small downloadable file of a list of preparatory activities you might want to undertake with pupils who have never used artefacts before.  You know the sort of thing: ‘feely bags’ to describe ‘blind’ or passing a piece of pristine tissue paper around the room as if it were a bird with a broken wing.  These activities establish the right atmosphere of

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