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The Tudors

This part is mainly for parents or teachers.

Our site is aimed at giving young people, and any others who wish to join in, more knowledge about the world they inhabit. There is no defined age range. If pushed, I would say age 5 to 13 but older children can easily use it and the youngest can do so with adult, or older sibling, help.

We want to create, within those who follow us, an infectious desire to learn. The material we upload can be used in a variety of ways and will, hopefully, encourage people to actually become part of the whole learning process. There is, however, no specific or prescribed way to make use of our site. We provide the necessary tools for you to build the learning machine. To be absolutely honest, as one teacher involved in the development of the site said to me, if you can't find parts to both motivate your pupils and make their learning more fun and also more meaningful, you may be in the wrong profession.

This is the position as at the end of 2019 with some information about our plans for the next two years.

SECTIONS ALREADY ON THE SITE

KNOW YOUR CONTINENT

These pages, which began in September 2018, are to introduce our followers to the various countries around the world. They give a brief but interesting introduction to these countries. Information is geared, in part, to what might interest young people but, for each country, identical topics are covered so comparisons are easy. We use a lot of statistical date represented in different ways and, as such, it achieves our aim of a cross-curricula project. Children can be encouraged to make comparisons between countries that we do not and decide how to represent their findings.

Each diagram is uploaded to the site as a jpeg and so can, individually, be saved by the users. This, we hope, makes producing comparative data not only easier but also a little bit more exciting.

Information, on its own, is pretty useless. It is knowing what to do with that information that turns it into knowledge and, once you have that knowledge, it is using your imagination to create something new or different that is truly an achievement. Remember that Einstein believed that "Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” and added "The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination."

We know we are providing the information, it is for you to encourage those having this information to make it into knowledge and imagine what can be done with it. Dear old Mr E also said "It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken the joy in creative expression and knowledge.".

TIMES PAST

England's history has been divided into 24 separate time periods. Within each period, except the first one, there are 3 parts:-

  • A timeline and narrative, the timeline of which is divided into various calendar years which can be clicked to read more about the events in that year.


  • A series of hoots, “written” by Owlbut in his own style, and showing everyday life in the chosen period. He covers homes, clothes, food, daily life and culture for each period.


  • A story about the period, for which we are asking our followers to submit a drawing or picture, the best of which will then appear with the relevant story.

GET INVOLVED

In this section we have set out various projects that can be done by young people from all over the world. Their finished work will then appear as a link to a genuine school site or actually hosted on this part of our site.

The projects cater for all age groups and all levels of learners. There are those to be done on your own and those to be done with others, the ones most likely to be done in a school situation. Two more projects will be added at the start of 2020.

Each project has instructions and information on how to submit it plus, where applicable, some examples of work done previously.

With the projects we also want to involve the older generation, apart from me, in our site and one project in particular hopes to achieve this aim.

We are well aware that teachers may need time to integrate these projects into their programmes of work and so we will not upload any projects or links until September 2021 although there is nothing to stop you putting the work on your own school site before then.

WORK BETWEEN SEPTEMBER 2019 AND JULY 2020

We will spend this year encouraging schools to use the GET INVOLVED section and making some additions and revisions to our Times Past section.

In July 2020 we will update, en masse, all figures in our KNOW YOUR CONTINENT section and possibly add a few sections suggested by our development partners.

SECTION TO BE ADDED IN MARCH 2020

A JOURNEY INTO OWLBUT'S MIND


Every day for a week, starting on 30th March 2020, we will be uploading some short videos, about 7-8 minutes each. All is revealed in the Journey One section but the purpose is to visually explain our site in more detail, give some ideas on how best to use it and also give more information about our future plans, especially those detailed in the next parts.

SECTIONS TO BE ADDED BETWEEN SEPTEMBER 2020 AND JULY 2021

A JOURNEY THROUGH ENGLAND

As is explained in the Journey Two section, from September 2020 until July 2021 we will be travelling through England, visiting every county and metropolitan borough. Material gathered from the journey will be upload to the site on a weekly basis. There will be 3 main sections:-

  • Information for each county and metropolitan borough which will include a map, a selection of facts regarding size, population, the county town and fits well with the second bullet point in the Key Stage 2 locational knowledge part of the English national curriculum for geography

  • Owlbut's blog, written especially for younger children and including a selection of pictures taken from our journey that week. This simple blog will allow us to introduce the geographical vocabulary detailed in the human and physical geography part of Key Stage 1 of the curriculum, both physical and human features. By describing the places we visit using simple compass directions we can also cover some of the geographical skills and fieldwork of the same curriculum. Owlbut will instigate discussion topics each week and give some ideas of future work.

  • A video diary of our journey will be uploaded, this being intended for Key Stage 2 pupils and covering some parts of the locational knowledge, place knowledge, human and physical geography and indeed skills and fieldwork of their curriculum. One of our projects in the Get Involved section, namely my school, encourages them to observe, measure, record and present the human and physical features of a local area using a range of methods.

There will be details of our limerick competition as shown on the club pages plus a look and listen as to how places have changed over the last 60 or so years.

It will be a real and exciting journey for children to follow and may inspire them to go out and look more at their own area.

SECTIONS TO BE ADDED IN OCTOBER 2021

During the course of our 2020-2021 journey we will collect some footage that, in October 2021, will be added to various parts of our Times Past sections.

ENHANCING THE TIMELINE MATERIAL

History does not happen in an organised fashion so we cannot simply upload events each week from our journey. If we did there would be uploads appearing at random periods of history in the same week. Therefore, video clips covering events and places on our timeline will be uploaded in October 2021.

PICTURES TO VIDEOS IN THE HOOTS SECTION

In a similar way, we will change each picture in our hoots section to a short 5 minute video, once again using material we have gathered from our journey. This will happen at the same time as the changes to the timeline.

SUMMARY

I believe that by using the medium of travel, you can both regulate and inspire that trait of imagination, so important in understanding history, by adding some reality to the learning process and as well as thinking how things may have been, see them as they are now.

In olden days, history could come more alive by seeing pictures in a book. That is how many of us learned. Modern technology allows us to take young people to the site where history happened and to let them view, with a bit of guidance, the environment in which the actual scenes happened and then use their imagination to improve their knowledge of, and thoughts about, actual events and the lifestyles of the people who lived in that time.

The project will provide the opportunity for those who cannot travel to share in a voyage of discovery and, by mixing generations as well as cultures, it will also confirm the view of Sir Francis Bacon that travel in the younger sort, is a part of education; in the elder, a part of experience. It will also, importantly, encourage inquisitive learning. It will not be an encyclopaedic piece of work for as well as answering some questions, it will pose other tantalising ones for the users to investigate.

It may appear to be more of a fun adventure than a curriculum resource. That is entirely intended. If learning is fun it will also be more enjoyable. If you feel someone is filming something specially to show you, it will be appreciated far more. What is more you may also feel more inclined to try to produce your own material, the very point of our projects in the Get Involved section.

I hope that you will encourage your own children, or those for whose learning you have a responsibility, to join in and use the material I have devised and become a part of their own learning journey too.