Monday, 5 January 2015

The 20th Century

We've gone from the Ancient Greeks all the way to the 20th Century.  Our growing timeline keeps everything in context and it seems to allow us to skip from era to era with a deeper understanding each time.

We began at the death of Queen Victoria in 1901 and the coronation of her son 'Bertie', King Edward VII.

Nanny M lent us some heirlooms including a photo of the children's great great grandmother who was born in 1890.

We investigated and dated Victorian and Edwardian coins and we even found one of George IV!

Writing out an approximate diary of the food we eat every week, the children compared it to an actual food diary from the slums in London in 1900.  It was an eye-opener to say the least.  How blessed we are.

The kiddies were none too keen on the bread and butter they had for snack, despite my protestations that children from the slums didn't get snacks at all.  They weren't too keen on running around the frosty garden without shoes first thing either, but it woke them up and gave them a tiny insight into a world where you can't even afford shoes.

We discussed in some depth the Liberal Government welfare reforms commencing in 1906, after a national understanding that private charities alone should not be wholly responsible for helping those stuck in the cycle of unemployment, poverty and social exclusion.

New laws were passed including:

A National Insurance scheme for workers who missed work through illness
Labour exchanges to help the unemployed find work
Free school meals for children living in poverty
Free school medical inspections
Pensions for the over 70s
Benefit money for unemployed in certain trades

The children then designed posters to be used by the Liberal Government of the early 1900s to explain their new laws. 

Monkey Girl darned a sock - repair, repair, repair

And the two littlies had a bit of fun with sleeping bags living in two rooms like many in the slums.

After lunch the children played outside, followed by Maths, Nature Study, a most important Spider-man sticker book and Trampolining.

This evening the two eldest have Ceremonial Night at Sea Cadets, meaning they spent a long time boot polishing, ironing and de-fluffing their uniform before hand.