Then and Now: The Past in Your Class

Make history happen in your own classroom and find out what school was like for Melbourne students during the 1870s.

Students will welcome a costumed teacher to their classroom, all the way from 1870s Melbourne! Could it be Mrs. Sargood, the stern matriarch of Rippon Lea Estate, or Mrs. Ferguson the austere governess?   

Facilitators can visit your school and deliver up to 3 sessions per day in metropolitan Melbourne and suburbs depending on travel time. 

If you cannot visit Rippon Lea this is an ideal option. If you can then this is a great post Rippon Lea excursion activity. 

Primary Incursion Program

Students will engage in History curriculum outcomes through various touchpoints such as social expectations for children, technologies, and the structure of schools and student learning in the 1800s.  

Activities included in the program include:  

1800s writing: Students are given the chance to see how challenging and time-consuming writing with a nib and ink is. Students learn why people wrote using this technology and how important the art of letter writing was in the 1800s.   

Meet your teacher: Students meet their costumed Education Facilitator and learn about life at Rippon Lea Mansion, the 12 Sargood children who lived there, and how these children went to a special kind of school in their house!  

An 1800s classroom: Students are transported back to an era where children “should be seen and not heard” and experience the many rules and formalities of everyday life.   

This program ties in perfectly with the ‘Then and Now’ History unit for lower to middle primary. Through a comparative study, students will explore the differences in how students learned in the past. 

Curriculum links for Foundation to Level 2 students
SubjectStrandSub-StrandOutcomesAt the incursion students will...
HistoryHistorical Concepts and SkillsHistorical Sources as EvidenceIdentify the content features of primary sources when describing the significance of people, places or events (VCHHC054)Be introduced to many historical object examples and discuss how they are different to everyday objects in the 21st century.
Identify perspectives about changes to daily life from people in the past or present (VCHHC055)Learn about how children of the past learnt at school or with a governess and discuss how this differs from the present day.
Historical KnowledgePersonal HistoriesHow the present, past and future are signified by terms indicating and describing time (VCHHK060)Be introduced to the concept of time, and how the past and the present are linked.
Community HistoriesThe effect of changing technology on people’s lives and their perspectives on the significance of that change (VCHHK065)Experience the differences in writing materials from the 1800s and today, and how they affect considerations such as time, cleanliness, and difficulty of use.
Critical and Creative ThinkingReasoningCompare and contrast information and ideas in own and others reasoning (VCCCTR005)Discuss the similarities and differences between life in the 1800s and today for different types of people.

Further Program Details

Year Levels:Monday to Friday during school terms
Duration:45 minutes, with up to three sessions a day
Numbers:15-30 students per session
Resources:Teachers will receive a detailed resource pack that includes suggested pre- and post-visit activities upon booking.
Cost:$12 per student. Plus a flat fee to cover travel costs, calculated based on school location.
SafetyClick here to access the Incursion Task Risk Assessment document.
BookingsOnline Booking Form or email or phone: 9656 9817

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