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Year 5 – Southwell Workhouse visit

Class 5 pupils travelled back in time to experience life as a child living in a workhouse. Linked to their project and Shared Reading book ‘Twist of Gold’, children went back to 1847 to learn about life for those children who were forced into the workhouse due to the Great Famine.

On their arrival, pupils were separated into boys and girls and did not mix again! After changing into clothes representative of that time, pupils met the House Master, Madam and school teacher! They were very strict! Once the rules were understood, pupils learnt about the roles of boys and girls. Boys were expected to farm and undertake labour intensive jobs, whilst the girls where introduced to cooking, cleaning and servant roles! Nevertheless, education was important, so the day always began with learning to read, write and maths.

The pupils developed their knowledge and understanding about the harsh living conditions such as: daily timetable, food and meals, work, sleeping quarters, healthcare, separation from family, punishment and compulsory attendance at Church every Sunday.

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  • Southwold Primary School - Nottingham