Brenden is Teaching


NameChildren in Victorian Times - Unit 11
DescriptionA study of children in Victorian Times
File 112_History - Victorian children unit 11.doc
File 2

☝️ Download Planning


Year: 5 Term: Autumn (2nd half)

Unit 11: Children In VictorianBritain


Year5 first half


ABOUT THE UNIT (This unit takes approximately 10 hours)



This unit helps pupils to learn about thelives and hardships of Victorian children. Class 5a and 5b workfocuses on:

  Exploring andresearching about the lives of Victorian children and comparisonsof rich and poor children in Victorian society

  How attitudes towardschildren changed in the Victorian era

  The people who areremembered for bringing about change in the quality of childrenslives (we have chosen to focus specifically on Shaftesbury,Barnardo and Owen)

  Building upon theirunderstanding of chronology by looking at the Victorian periodwithin a time framework (we have chosen to make clearchronological comparisons with previous topics covered lower downthe school e.g. Romans, Vikings, Great Fire of London and theTudors. As per the National Curriculum, pupils will be encouragedto describe and make links between the main events, situations andchanges across the different periods studied).

  Sequencing changeswithin the Victorian era

Work in this unit also offers opportunitiesfor pupils to find out howearly (Victorian) scientific ideas about dietand health were tested in order to make links with our Sciencetopic (Keeping Healthy). We will be looking atbeliefs and attitudes in thesecontexts.

The unit also helpspupils to usetheir knowledge and understanding of History to research and writeabout an aspect of the Victorians at home as part of an independentproject. Parents will be encouraged to support their child in thisextra homework.










Unit 11 builds onchildrens understanding of social change which was introduced inrelation to the Tudor period in Unit 8 (Y4)

Literacy: read/listen to biographies (Mary Seacole) andstories/videos about Victorian characters (Oliver Twist, The WaterBabies)

Drama: pupils will participate in a Victorian Day atBraintree District Museum. They will role play a day in the life ofa Victorian school-child (3rd November)

Art: links with portraits and how weuse these to give clues about the past


PSHE: Links with Units 2B (why and howrules and laws are made and enforced with reference to Victorianchild reforms)

Science: find out howearly scientific ideas about diet and healthwere tested. This will be linked to this terms work e.g. Lister,Pasteur, Snow, Budd, and Jenner.

EALopportunities: Black history e.g. MarySeacole (Crimean nurse), William Wilberforce (theabolitionist)

Communication: pupilswill be encouraged to think about how they will organise and recordwhat has been covered in lessons with a focus on a more independentapproach. This will include En1 (S&L) and ICT opportunities(e.g. filming, word processing etc.).

  a portrait of QueenVictoria and her family

  information on Victorianchildren at work, e.g. contemporary engravings, extractsfrom contemporary authors, factory and mine reports

  information on LordShaftesbury, Robert Owen and Dr Barnardo, e.g. textbooks,pack from Barnardos on Victorian Britain

  information on Victorianschools, e.g. extracts from stories, school logbooks,inspection reports

  information on Victorianleisure, e.g. games, toys, posters, books, songbooks ofchildren at work in factories and mines

  contemporary novels,e.g. novels by Kingsley, Dickens

  a class time line



Useful websites:


Victorian Britain:

Victorian Diary:

Victorian House:

Victorian toys web enquiry:

Victorian trail (teacher info):

Victorian scientific landmarks:

The Workhouse:

Virtual Victorians:



EALpupils: SENpupils:G&T pupils:









Most children (A) will:

placethe changes in the period within a chronological framework; makeappropriate use of dates and terms; demonstrate knowledge andunderstanding about the everyday lives of children in the Victorianperiod; show how some aspects of the period have been interpretedin different ways; select and combine information from a range ofvisual, textbook and documentary sources; communicate theirknowledge and understanding of changes to childrens lives inVictorian times in organised and structured ways



Some children (LA) will nothave
made so much progress and will:

recognise some similarities anddifferences between the lives of children from different areas ofVictorian society; ask and answer questions about the period byusing at least one source of information


Some children (MA/A) willhave
progressed further and will also:

describe reasons for andresults of particular events; use their knowledge and understandingof the Victorian period to make links with other societies andperiods; select and combine information from a range of sources toreach substantiated conclusions






TeachingActivities and Key Vocabulary


Learning Outcomes& Assessments

w/c 6thSeptember

      Blank timelinepro-forma for LA pupils


      Timeline list (inLCP file p8)


      Key words ondisplay in topic corner (ongoing)


      Learningobjectives on the flipchart (ongoing for pupils to refer backto)


NB need to buyclass timeline or TA to make one?





      Tounderstand the term chronological



      To know where theVictorian era fits in with relation to previous eras studied



















Wheredoes the Victorian period fit in?

Askpupils to work in (mixed ability) groups and share what theyalready know about the period and then feed back to the rest of theclass. Pupils can use large sugar paper and pens to record whatthey know. These will be displayed at end of lesson to encouragepupils to refer back to what they know throughout the wholetopic.


(xeroxdisplay work reduced to 95% to stick in topic books for individualreference)


Usingwhole class timeline, pupils will place events and changes ontimeline with reference to previous topics studied. Key vocabularywill be used and taught


Independentwork: complete own timeline applying what has been learnt. Pupilschoose carefully relevant information to include on their timelinesapplying what has been learnt in lessons. LA pupils to be givenpro-forma, partially filled in




vocabulary: usedates and vocabulary relating to the passing of time, includingchronological, chronology, ancient, modern, BC, AD, century anddecade.

Onegroup to use Inspiration mind mapping software to record whatthey know


Forteacher timeline info:


Childrensinteractive timeline:














  Pupils understandthe term chronological


  Pupils know wherethe Victorian period fits in with relation to previous topicsstudied


Extension for MApupils:

  MApupils can incorporate new vocabulary learnt in their Speaking andListening





SEN pupils:see page 1










wc 13thSeptember






Oliver Twist



Oliver Twist video


The Water Babies novel



  Queen Victoriaschildren (LCP



  poor childrenusing sources from workhouses and orphanages

  Rangeof sources (LCP p20, website

  extractsfrom contemporary authors (see above), reports on factories &mines, engravings etc


  Usesources from LCP file p21-22






























  To draw inferences about the livesof children from portraits



  Tosuggest what life was like for children living in the past



  More able pupilsto make comparisons between rich and poor children

Teaching Activities andKey Vocabulary



NB this willlink to narrative work we are doing in Literacy this week(contemporary novels: Oliver Twist and The Water Babies)


What was it like for children livingin Victorian times?

Show pupils an extract from videoabout life for the poor in the nineteenth century. Discuss theextract and what sources of information the filmmaker might haveused and what other sources might be used to find out more.


On topic table, provide a range ofsources, e.g. extracts from contemporary authors (Kingsley,Dickens), reports on factories or mines, engravings. Ask thechildren (in mixed pairs) to make a list of what they can inferabout the life of poor children from the sources and present it toclass.

Teacher to provide some informationon the numbers of working children, their hours of work, the typesof jobs they did and their lack of education. Discuss with pupilswhy children worked in Victorian times.



Askthe children to imagine they are a Victorian child working in afactory and write an extract from a factory report describing thework a child of their age was doing.


vocabulary:trappers, getters, hurriers, legal guardian, Poor Law , workhouse,orphanage, child labour

ICT opportunities




Oliver Twist video


Learning Outcomes &Assessments




  Pupils can list a number ofaspects of daily life for poor and rich Victorianchildren


  Pupils can produce a simplenarrative to illustrate what they know about the work done byVictorian children


Extension for MApupils:

  MA pupils can include in theirnarratives some comparisons between rich and poor Victorianchildren including the beliefs and attitudes of Victorianpeople




EAL pupils:

SEN pupils: see page1

G&T pupils:

w/c 20thSeptember

This weeks





  Written sources and pictures basedon these three people


  LCP 35-38


  Learning Curve webtrail loadedonto class files


  Pictures to place onto classtimeline



Britain Masterfile (p97, 84









Learning Objectives




  To understand that the work of individuals canchange aspects of society


  To find out about importantfigures in Victorian times


  To present their findings indifferent ways

TeachingActivities and Key Vocabulary





Who helped to improve the lives ofVictorian children?

Ask the children what they thinkneeded to be done for Victorian children. Make a list fordisplay


Talk about Lord Shaftesbury, WilliamWilberforce and Dr Barnardo and how they helped children, placingkey events on the time line. Ask the children to find out about thework of these men, and the way that they changed some childrenslives using a variety of written sources and pictures.


Ask the children to present theirwork using freeze-frames or brief role-plays

Extended writing: write an accountof one of these men applying what you have learnt


Art:Design a posterto campaign against child labour in the factories.


Speaking &Listening opportunity:

Hold aclass debate on child labour with half of the class arguing forchild labour. See Spartacus web site for teacher info


vocabulary: reformer, child laws,protection, Acts of Parliament, factory report, law,politician, House of Lords









Carry out tasks 2and 3 (reading support may be needed):

MApupils can also carry out task 1


Teacher info forLord Shaftesbury:






Learning Outcomes &Assessments





  Pupils can answer questions aboutwho helped to improve childrens lives and how

  Pupils can select appropriateinformation and present it, to show what they have found out aboutLord Shaftesbury, William Wilberforce and Dr Barnardo


Extension for MA pupils:

  How effective was the 1833 FactoryAct? Explain your answer (hint: Is the number of convictions a goodor bad sign?).



EAL pupils:

SEN pupils: see page1

G&T pupils:

w/c 27thSeptember

This weeks



  See websitereference on right


  Victorian BritainMasterfile for teacher background medical information (p25, 82, 83,86)


  Written sources andpictures based on living conditions




  Homework sheet onleisure for following week






































      To learn how touse primary & secondary sources of information to unearth detailsof city life/


TeachingActivities and Key Vocabulary



What were theliving conditions of the Victorian poor? (include health problemsand medical pioneers)



i) Give pupils athrough-the-keyhole look at Victorian homes in this Snapshot (seewebsite on right). Starting from the macro level - a small sectionof a map of Hackney - pupils examine photographic evidence and thencensus material to unearth details of home life.


ii) Explain howlittle was known in Victorian times about how diseases weretransmitted or even anything about the diseases.

Focusing onoutbreaks of cholera and typhoid,pupils are to respond to questions (comprehension) as a follow upto class discussion with particular emphasis on how livingconditions for the poor contributed to outbreaks.







vocabulary:photographic evidence, census returns, occupants, local archive,lodging houses, back to backs, diseases, sewers, cholera,typhoid, living conditions

ICT opportunities








Quiz: why didLondon stink? (see above URL)




Athome, can pupils do web research on these two diseases?

Learning Outcomes &Assessments




  Pupils can give examples ofboth primary and secondary sources of information


  Pupils can use sources ofinformation to draw out key facts


Extension for MApupils:

MA pupils can useprimary sources to make inferences about living conditions(specifically census returns)











SEN pupils:see page 1







TeachingActivities and Key Vocabulary


Learning Outcomes& Assessments

w/c 4thOctober

       A range ofartefacts such as replicas of Victorian toys and games,copies of posters, copies of original books andsongbooks.

       Contemporarysources, proverbs about childhood and contemporary illustrationsthat idealise childhood, could be used to develop understanding ofVictorian attitudes.

       Homeworksheets to ask family members what they like to do forleisure

       Masterfile p66

       LCP p52-56





















      To consider howVictorian children spent their leisure time


      To consider howattitudes to children and childhood have changed over time





How did differentVictorian children use their spare time?

Discuss ways ofspending spare time, and ask the children to list their interestsand those of others in their families (refer to homework given inprevious week). Ask them to consider which would have been possiblein 1890 and which not, giving reasons. Discuss with the childrenwhat leisure interests may have been available.


Give the childrena range of sources on Victorian leisure pursuits,e.g. artefacts, textbooks, contemporary paintings,pictures. Ask the children to complete a table listing eachleisure pursuit and describing it.


Tell the childrenabout late-Victorian attitudes, e.g. that childhood was atime for protection from immoral aspects of adult life and forlearning family values and moral principles. Ask the childrento compare Victorian attitudes with those of today.


Ask the childrento use the sources of information to help them produceadvertisements or a poster advertising the benefits of a new toy orpursuit, and highlighting what they have been told about Victorianattitudes.


NB use one ICTsession to explore websites on right for in depth research


Vocabulary: decoupage, Fantascope,Mysterion, Kairosithon, hopscotch, skipping and whip and top, BankHoliday Act in 1871, Penny Farthing 1870, first FA Cup Final 1871,Blackpool, Southend, Brighton and Ilfracombe in Devon (popularholiday resorts), to be seen and not heard.














  Produce advertisements that reflect Victorianattitudes and values


Web research

  find out what Victorian children might have donein their spare time

  select relevant information about a toy/leisurepursuit


Good websites for this:



      To assesswhether the children are aware of what might be technologicallyappropriate for the period.

  Ability to select relevantinformation about a chosen toy/leisure pursuit and talk aboutit




Extension for MApupils:


Compare moralprinciples: then and now. Further research/challenge: give possiblereasons for these changes





EAL pupils:

SEN pupils: see page1






TeachingActivities and Key Vocabulary


Learning Outcomes& Assessments

w/c 11thOctober


      Time linefor reference

      Own workto refer back to

      Range ofsources on topic table

      Promptsheet for LA pupils (writing frame?)

      List ofprevious learning objectives (see flipchart)

      LCPp60-62 for teacher reference























  To recall information about thelife of children in Victorian times

  To select appropriate material andpresent it in a way that shows their understanding of the Victorianperiod


How did life change for childrenliving in Victorian Britain?

Refer to the time line to recap themain events, dates and figures to help the children recall some ofthe main changes to the lives of children during the Victorianperiod.

Discuss with the children why thechanges took place and who benefited from them. Tell the childrenthat a large number of children were still working in 1901.

Provide the children with a range ofsources and ask them to summarise what they have found out in waysthat provide a sense of the Victorian period.







Some children will need support withthe extended writing activity.


Pupils need to be given a chance tosummarise what they have learnt, and to try to present it ashistorians.



Vocabulary: access to word bankcovering all previous vocabulary (available on sheet and on wall intopic corner).




Pupils can check workon hard drive or previous websites explored to promptmemories


  To assess whether pupils canrecall information about what children did in Victoriantimes

  To see how pupils presentinformation showing knowledge and an appreciation of the Victorianperiod


Extension for MApupils:

MA pupils to write adetailed account of what they have learnt, using dates and termsappropriately and clearly. They can be asked to identify how thelives of some children had changed and others hadstayed the same.





EAL pupils:

SEN pupils: see page1






TeachingActivities and Key vocabulary


Learning Outcomes& Assessments

w/c 18thOctober


      LCP file forpictures/info

      Websites on right forteacher info


      Masterfile p88-92

      Print out primarysources for topic table for MA pupils (logs and reports)

      Extract from Tom BrownsSchooldays for class text



NB give outinstructions for parents re school costumes for November3rd



















  To compare modern andVictorian schooling


  To communicate throughdrama an understanding of the nature of school life in Victoriantimes


NB this work covers a period of twoweeks including the week after half term in preparation forBraintree visit


What was it like going to school atthe end of the nineteenth century?

Show the children pictures of schoollife at the end of the nineteenth century and discuss how schoolappears different from today, e.g. uniforms, architectureand interiors of classrooms.

Referring to the time line, talkbriefly about the 1870 Education Act, and how schooling was notfree until 1891. Use sources to illustrate aspects of school lifeat this time, e.g. extracts from stories, school logbooks,inspection reports.


Speaking and Listening:Ask thechildren to produce a conversation between two children, oneestablished in school and the other a new arrival who had beenworking in a factory, mill or mine for years. Select children topresent their work to the class.

Lead a discussion on the differencesin the views of school and work and why the children in thenineteenth century would have interpreted school lifedifferently.





Vocabulary: Eton, Rugby, "Dame" schools, "ragged"schools, pupil teachers, three Rs: Reading, wRiting andaRithmetic, slates, copybooks, abacus, canings, Dunce's Cap,drill




1stICT session

InteractiveVictorian school site ICT suite session needed:


2ndICT session

Over the next fewweeks, pupils will learn how to create a master slide onPowerpoint. They will then create a multimedia presentationconsisting of several pages about Victorian education. Pupils willpresent these to the class.






  To assess whether pupils can identify keydifferences between modern and Victorian schooling

  To know why the years of 1870and 1891 were key points in education history


Extension for MA pupils:

Use primary sourcese.g. reports and school logs to make inferences about the schoolday and possible effects upon children




EAL pupils:

SEN pupils: see page1

G&T pupils:





Unit 11

Children In VictorianBritain

Level 2

Pupils show theirdeveloping sense of chronology by using terms concerned with thepassing of time, by placing events and objects in order, and byrecognising that their own lives are different from the lives ofpeople in the past. They show knowledge and understanding ofaspects of the past beyond living memory, and of some of the mainevents and people they have studied. They are beginning torecognise that there are reasons why people in the past acted asthey did. They are beginning to identify some of the different waysin which the past is represented. They observe or handle sources ofinformation to answer questions about the past on the basis ofsimple observations.

Level 3

Pupils show theirdeveloping understanding of chronology by their realisation thatthe past can be divided into different periods of time, theirrecognition of some of the similarities and differences betweenthese periods, and their use of dates and terms. They showknowledge and understanding of some of the main events, people andchanges studied. They are beginning to give a few reasons for, andresults of, the main events and changes. They identify some of thedifferent ways in which the past is represented. They use sourcesof information in ways that go beyond simple observations to answerquestions about the past.

Level 4

Pupils showfactual knowledge and understanding of aspects of the history ofBritain and the wider world. They use this to describecharacteristic features of past societies and periods, and toidentify changes within and across different periods. They describesome of the main events, people and changes. They give some reasonsfor, and results of, the main events and changes. They show someunderstanding that aspects of the past have been represented andinterpreted in different ways. They are beginning to select andcombine information from different sources. They are beginning toproduce structured work, making appropriate use of dates andterms.

Level 5

Pupils showincreasing depth of factual knowledge and understanding of aspectsof the history of Britain and the wider world. They use this todescribe features of past societies and periods and to begin tomake links between them. They describe events, people and changes.They describe and make links between events and changes and givereasons for, and results of, these events and changes. They knowthat some events, people and changes have been interpreted indifferent ways and suggest possible reasons for this. Using theirknowledge and understanding, pupils are beginning to evaluatesources of information and identify those that are useful forparticular tasks. They select and organise information to producestructured work, making appropriate use of dates andterms.