Exploring the Black Country Living Museum

Date Posted: 29/04/2015

Featuring a village to explore, trams to ride and stories to hear, the Black Country Living Museum offers pupils the chance to discover the industrial landscape and history of the Black Country.

The open-air Black Country Living museum offers Curriculum linked learning opportunities, covering History, Science, the Arts, Technology, Geography, Literacy, Maths and Citizenship.

Resources are available online for teachers to use both pre and post visit, which include activity planners and worksheets to download, as well as a pre-written risk assessment and access guide.

Activities at the museum include…

Key Stage 1

Houses & Homes

Curriculum link: Changes within living memory

Subjects covered: History, English, Maths, Science, Design & Technology, Art & Design

Led by a costumed guide, this visit encourages children to develop an awareness of the past through an investigation of the different houses and homes at the museum, exploring the relationship between the house and the lifestyles of the people who lived in them. Using the houses as a context, pupils will also learn how life has changed over time, noting the similarities and differences between the ways of life in different periods.

The ‘Wash Day Experience’ is an additional activity available to be booked with this visit. It provides students with the opportunity to take part in a laundry session getting hands-on with a dolly tub, wash board, posser and mangle. There is also an opportunity to take part in an object handling session in the kitchen investigating common household items for cooking, ironing and washing. This introduces children to the concepts of 'old' and 'new', and encourages them to think about changes in living memory.

To view the House & Homes project planner click here.

Key Stage 2

History detectives: the changing lives of children 1850-1945

Curriculum link: A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils' chronological knowledge beyond 1066

Subjects covered: History, English, Geography

In this self-led historical enquiry, students will investigate the lives of real children who lived in the Black Country looking at key events using a range of different historical sources, including historic buildings, interiors, landscapes, artefacts photographs and archival material.

With the help of a supplied investigation pack, children will be able to learn about nine year old Rose Bradley and eight year old Lillian Hodgkiss, as well as other children of the period, as they follow a trail encouraging them to develop their historical enquiry skills by asking and answering questions, selecting and recording information and drawing conclusions relevant to the focus of enquiry.

Key Stage 3

The significance of coal and iron in the Black Country 1712-1901

Curriculum link: A local history study

Subjects covered: History, English, Design & Technology

Here, pupils will use the evidence of historic objects, buildings and landscapes to identify the main features of local industrial changes. A tour, which includes an investigation of steam power, the development of the canal system, the iron industry including hot metal demonstrations and mineral extraction will also form part of the visit and will highlight the developments of the time and the impact they had on individuals, society and the environment in the Black Country.

To view The significance of coal and iron in the Black Country project planner click here.

Key Stage 4

The history of engineering in the Black Country, 1700-1940

Subjects covered: History, Design & Technology

Students will look at the basic engineering processes of the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries and gain an understanding of the significance of these developments, including how it contributed and improved the Black Country’s society and economy.

As well as discovering the history of engineering in the Black Country, students will get the chance to learn about the properties, characteristics and features of materials that affect their ability to be shaped, formed and treated. The basic engineering processes of the 19th and early 20th centuries, including the extraction of materials, shaping and manipulation, joining and assembly, heat and chemical treatment and surface finishing, will also be included on this visit for Key Stage 4 students.

For more information visit www.bclm.co.uk/learning.htm.

School Travel Organiser's Guide