J5 discovers Victorian values

Our Y5s had a chance to travel back in time to the Victorian era and sample how life would have been lived over a hundred and twenty years ago.

Themed trips are always a favourite with the Juniors; the staff at Kent Life Museum are really knowledgeable about their subject and really get into the roles they play.

Meeting up with scullery maid Edna Parsnip, the children were able to discover just how hard the servants in a big house would have to work, as they scrubbed, mangled and folded up a day’s washing, while schoolmaster Mr Pommel had the children learning their three R’s and practise their writing with chalk and slates.

Fred the baker reminded us of how complicated the old monetary system was, with four farthings to a penny, twelve pennies to a shilling and twenty shillings to a pound, as J5 got to grips with shopping in different shops for their bread, meat and vegetables.

A wealthy industrialist painted a grim picture of the jobs children had to do (being a tanner was especially grim – ask the kids!), while Florence Nightingale, the ‘lady with the lamp’ herself, gave us a quick tutorial in field dressings for soldiers fighting in the Crimean War.

With a tour around a genuine Victorian house, a chance to meet some of Kent Life’s varied animals and of course, a trip to the shops, this was a busy and highly educational day out for the children.