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The Victorian Times Victorian schools. School attendance In early Victorian England many children never went to school and more than half of them grew.

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Presentation on theme: "The Victorian Times Victorian schools. School attendance In early Victorian England many children never went to school and more than half of them grew."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Victorian Times Victorian schools

2 School attendance In early Victorian England many children never went to school and more than half of them grew up unable to read and write A child’s schooling depended very much upon how much money their family had

3 Rich children... These were the lucky ones, they were looked after by nannies and taught by a governess in their own home The boys would be sent to a public school such as Eton or Rugby when when they were old enough. The girls were kept at home and taught singing, piano playing and sewing, all the things that young ladies should be good at!

4 Poor children... Were less fortunate, at the beginning of the Victorian period many poor children simply didn’t go to school If they did, they would go to Sunday schools, ‘Dame’ schools or ‘ragged’ schools Sunday schools were run by churches, they would be taught Bible stories and how to read a little ‘Dame’ schools were run by local women in their homes ‘Ragged’ schools were for very poor children or orphans

5 Important dates – a law was passed requiring every child working in a factory to receive 6 half- days of schooling a week 1870 – a law was passed requiring all areas of Britain to provide schools for children aged 5 – 12, although it cost money and was not compulsory so not everyone went 1880 – school became compulsory for everyone under 10, and this was then raised to twelve

6 The Schoolroom Often the school was quite a grim building, and usually very cold The walls were usually quite bare, except for maybe an embroidered text or an atlas Curtains were used to separate classrooms so often you could hear the shouts of other classes Windows were often built very high in schools so the children couldn’t look out of the windows and be distracted from their work Because more and more children were attending school, they became very crowded School managers didn’t like to spend money on repairs, so buildings were often allowed to rot and broken equipment was not replaced

7 Teachers Teachers Children were often scared of their teachers because they were very strict Teachers were helped by ‘pupil teachers’, these were girls or boys aged thirteen or over who helped the teacher to control the class After 5 years of apprenticeship, these ‘pupil teachers’ could then become teachers themselves Before 1850 you could see classes as large as 50 being taught by one teacher and a few ‘monitors’. These ‘monitors’ were students themselves who were taught by the main teacher, and then went to try and teach their schoolmates There were more female teachers than male teachers and their salaries were very low Often people became teachers because they were too ill to do anything else, and their health was made worse by the poor conditions in school Sometimes parents shouted at or attacked teachers because they thought that their children should be working to earn money not wasting their time at school, teachers in rough areas had to learn to box!

8 The School Day... After 1870, it was compulsory for children to attend school between the ages of 5 and 13 Many pupils faced a walk of several miles through the countryside to get to school, which, in the winter, was freezing cold and many just simply didn’t turn up School started at 9am and finished at 5pm, and the pupils had a two-hour lunch break In class, all the pupils had to do the same thing at the same time because there were so many students, usually this meant just copying from the board At playtime, the children would go into a small yard and play games such as blind man’s buff, hide-and-seek and hopscotch. Some boys would beg a pig’s bladder from the butcher which they would blow up and use as a football!

9 Lessons Victorian lessons were based around what was known as the ‘three R’s’ ◦ R eading ◦ W r iting ◦ A r ithmetic Children would learn by just repeating the teacher until they were word perfect Science was taught by giving children an object, such as a model of an animal and asking them to observe it

10 Lessons The Victorian timetable included many other lessons, such as Geography, Needlework, Cookery and Woodwork, but they were all taught through the ‘chalking and talking’ method: the teacher simply writing things on the board and asking the children to repeat it P.E would be taught through the ‘drill’ method. A teacher would play the piano and the pupils would jog, stretch and lift weights in time with the music.

11 Slates and Copybooks Paper was expensive, children therefore had to write on slates. They would scratch their work into the slates with slate pencils and these slates could then be wiped clean and used again for the next lesson. Children were supposed to bring sponges to clean their slates but most just spat on them and wiped them with their sleeves! Older children would learn how to write on paper using ink pens and copybooks. A pupil who was nominated the ‘ink monitor’ would fill up the ink pots in the morning, which would be placed in the holes in the desks. They would dip the pens in the ink and practice spelling out difficult dictations, the pens would have to be dipped every few words so that they didn’t run dry. Children would be punished for spilling any ink and ‘blotting their copybooks’.

12 Reader Slates would hang from the walls of the younger children’s classes, they would learn how to chant the names of these objects by heart Once they had learnt to do this perfectly, they would move onto a ‘reader’. At the beginning this was usually the Bible, but when it was realise that this was difficult, the schools moved onto easier stories. Readers were intended to last a year, if the children finished too quickly, they would have to go back to the beginning and start reading it all over again!

13 Abacus Children would use an abacus to help them with maths. Victorian children didn’t learn the metric system that children learn today, they had to learn imperial weights and measures, such as : 1 mile = 1760 yards 1 yard = 3 feet 1 foot = 12 inches 1 stone = 14 pounds 1 pound = 16 oz

14 The Cane In Victorian times, caning was the main punishment for misbehaviour. Children could be caned for:- ◦ Rude conduct ◦ Sulkiness ◦ Answering back ◦ Missing Sunday prayers ◦ Being late Boys would be caned across their bottoms, and girls across the backs of their legs. Caning was extremely painful and would leave marks across the victim’s body, some saw it as a mark of shame, others as a badge of honour. Corporal punishment was not banned in UK schools until 1987

15 Dunce’s Cap Another punishment used by Victorian teachers was the Dunce’s cap. ‘Dunce’ meant a stupid person, and if a student fell behind they would be made to stand on a stool at the back of the class wearing an armband with ‘Dunce’ written on it and also forced to wear a tall, cone- shaped hat with the letter ‘D’ on it.

16 Victorian School vs. School Today Victorian School Teachers were allowed to hit pupils There was one teacher for 100 pupils Classrooms were separated by curtains Pupils went to school from 5 to 13 All students were supposed to learn with the same methods at the same time Pupils learned by copying from the board and repeating what the teacher said Children wrote on slates School Today Teachers are not allowed to hit pupils There is one teacher for pupils There are walls to separate classrooms Pupils attend school from 3 to 16 Not all pupils learn with the same methods Pupils learn through many different methods and have to think for themselves Children write on paper and in notebooks

17 Questions for discussion... What do you think is the most significant difference between Victorian schools and schools today? What was the most surprising thing that you learnt about Victorian schools? What is one thing that you like about the Victorian school system?


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