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The Middle Ages

Interactive History School Visits, Workshops and Learning Activities

Let us bring the WOW factor into your classrooms with our fun and informative medieval learning days.  We can bring this to life with our interactive workshops throughout the day covering the period from The Norman invasion in 1066 through to the Battle of Bosworth and Henry Tudor becoming king in 1485.

We love working with primary and secondary schools across Sussex, Surrey and Kent on their Ks1, Ks2 and Ks3 history curriculum topics. 

 

The Medieval Period

With the Normans in control of England following the Saxon defeat at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 England became a country ruled by a French speaking aristocracy.  Throughout this period the English kings fought their French neighbours when not on crusade in the Middle East.  During The Hundred Years’ War English archers were used to defeat the French armies at battles such as Crecy and Agincourt.  For most historians the Middle Ages ended when Henry Tudor defeated Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485.

 

"The children absolutely loved it....possibly not as much as i did though."

- Teacher, Hull

 

Artefacts Created for Workshops

For our Medieval school visits we have researched and recreated the following artefacts for use during your day: 

  • Full sets of chainmail armour as would have been worn by Norman knights fighting in the Crusades and the plate armour that would have been worn by the men at arms fighting in the Hundred Years’ War and the Wars of the Roses.
  • The weapons they would have carried in to battle, the swords, axes, spears and daggers as well as the shields that would have been used in battle.
  • The longbows and arrows used to such devastating effects during many of these battles.
  • Samples of chainmail and plate armour that would have been used in the armour of these warriors.  The iron and weapon steel that would have been used to make their swords, spears, lances, war hammers, poleaxes and axes.  
  • A full set of fur-on skins and skulls to represent the animals that the nobles would have hunted in their free time including bear, wolf, fox, badger, otter, beaver, lynx and roe, fallow and red deer.
  • The clothing, jewellery and everyday items that a noble and his family would wear and use at home.
  • The corn querns used for grinding down grain into flour.
  • A flint and steel fire lighting kit to make fire the old way. 

 

Activities Agenda

During Medieval history workshop your class will: 

  • See teachers dressed as a Norman noble in all his fine fighting equipment from full chainmail shirt, Norman helmet and expensive sword and shield and an ordinary man at arms with his simple spear, leather helmet, axe and shield, fighting for his lord.
  • Are your students strong enough to lift up our adult chain mail shirt? Then they can try on the helmets and chainmail and hold the shields, swords and spears we have made to fit them.
  • Small shields and foam swords for everyone to use to learn shield wall tactics.  Students can advance and attack their teachers whilst the teachers fight back with large foam balls.  Do you think you and your friends could form a shield wall in a real battle?
  • See teachers dressed in full plate armour as would have been worn at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415 and one of the archers who would have fought in Henry V’s army.  Look at the poleaxe and war hammer and the famous longbow and the arrows it shot to such devastating effect.  Which would you prefer to be?  The knight in 35kg of plate armour or the lightly armoured archer?
  • Go outside for a fire lighting demonstration and to witness how high and far a traditional longbow can shoot.
  • Imagine what life would be like training as a noble and using hunting as a way to train for war as well as supply meat to feed the army.  We can illustrate this with the wide range of reproductions of the equipment that we have made in exactly the same way our ancestors did.  See how soldiers on campaign foraged for food from the land they passed through.  Have a smell of the dried, salted fish that would have been supplied as part of their rations.  No wonder they preferred to hunt and forage for their food!
  • Enjoy a handling session with the animal furs of everything from a wolf to a bear and roe, fallow and red deer. A fun quiz where your students try to match 5 furs and 5 skulls with 5 pictures of different animals follows.
  • Everyone can have a turn on the corn querns to get a feel for what hard work it is to mill flour. All part of life's ‘daily grind'!
  • Visit the lord at home with his wife and children and their servant who looks after them.  See how the lady has to be dressed in all her finery with most of her clothes being held in place by lots of pins. 
  • Visit the Medieval doctor and see how he uses a urine sample to diagnose what is wrong with his patient (your teacher!) before he operates on his/her badly injured lower left leg.  A gory amputation that always seems to be very popular!  What does the doctor use leeches and maggots for

     
  • Take part in a question and answer session to finish the visit and reinforce the day's learning. 

 

"I loved wearing the armour. It was fun."

- Student

 

History Resources Box

To enable you to make the most of our visit we provide a History Resources Box* filled with interesting items from your chosen time period absolutely free. This complimentary box will arrive one month prior to your booking and we will collect it at the end of our visit. (Or you can choose to have it for one month after our workshop.) Boxes might include various items from arrow heads and clothing to fire lighting flint and steel, plus all those little items they needed for every day living. Teachers have found these resource boxes brilliant for helping with their programmes of work and lesson plans.

*We regret we can only provide History Resources Boxes to schools within a 10 mile radius of our location at this time (Horam, East Sussex).

 

Full Day or Half Day School History Workshops

School visits can be booked for: 
Full Day 09:00 AM - 15:15 PM* - £550+ VAT 
Half Day 09:00 AM - Lunch (For schools within 15 mile radius of TN21 only) - £375+ VAT

Mileage fees of .50p plus VAT per mile will apply to schools that are beyond a 15 mile radius of TN21. 

*You may choose to cover 2 different time periods in a full day as a cost-effective way to teach different year groups on the same visit.

Don't forget we cover a whole range of historic periods from Stone Age to WW2. 


Contact us  today and also ask us to put together a special Bespoke History Day.  We have just done one called "The Plague and the Fire of London" and another focusing on "Thomas à Becket and Henry II".

We are based in Horam, near Eastbourne in East Sussex and typically work with schools across Sussex, Surrey and Kent.