Whose Town? is an innovative resource for teaching social studies. A fun and interactive digital resource which brings Edinburgh’s history to life, it has been made available to all Glow users. It can be found in the Whose Town? Glow Group and accessed from the Glow National Site notice board. The resource is built on the City of Edinburgh’s heritage collections and is linked to the Curriculum for Excellence second, third and fourth levels.
Whose Town? looks at Edinburgh’s and Scotland’s past from 1850s to the 1950s through the eyes of people who lived there. There are 14 real lives to discover – people who lived in Victorian times, at the beginning of the twentieth century, during the Second World War and in the Fifties. Archival material is collected in a digital box and hidden in an attic for pupils to uncover and examine. Each life is captured at a particular point in history, creating a snapshot of their life: a Life in a Box.
Whose Town? features two lives with direct connections to East Lothian. Florence grew up in an affluent Victorian household and enjoyed holidays at the West Pans seaside with her family. Luca Scappaticcio arrived in Scotland from Italy at the turn of the twentieth century and settled in Musselburgh where he established what is now S. Luca’s of Musselburgh.
There are over 450 unique and original documents in digital format for topic and skills based work. Maps, newspaper articles, photographs, objects, documents, video and audio clips and even the bits and bobs that everyone collects are all used to bring the histories of the fourteen real lives to life. Whose Town? also contains a wealth of support materials for teachers from lesson plans to ideas on how to use archival materials in the classroom.
For more information or to request a free Whose Town? CD contact the Digital Information Team at Central Library in Edinburgh on 0131 242 8047. You’ll also find a wide range of supporting mat
The LTS Area Advisor Team have begun putting together a blog aimed at practitioners in primary, ASN and early years settings.
Practitioners like to talk to other practitioners and they do this with increased confidence when what they are discussing is based on successful real life experience. To this end, a new blog is now available to support CfE in primary, ASN and early years settings. It has been set up for people who are working at the ‘chalk face’. Visit the blog to hear what other practitioners have been doing and see the links to other related support and guidance on the LTS website. The blog will be looking at ‘what could I do now and how might I do it’ in a range of areas.
Some East Lothian Schools have already been involved in sharing their practice…
Stoneyhill Primary School: Driving consistency of practice in CfE
Dunbar Primary School: Planning teaching with colleagues
Pencaitland Primary School: Building Confidence in Assessment and Moderation
What have you been doing?
I’ve been writing a class blog about things we’ve been up to in Primary 1.
In what ways does this relate to Curriculum for Excellence?
I think that the blog allows the children to share their success in school at home. Also I feel it covers ‘I enjoy exploring and using technologies to communicate with others within and beyond my place of learning’ (TCH 0-04a) quite nicely!
What were the reasons for doing this?
It’s a way to communicate to parents what their children have been doing in school. By looking at the blog with their parents the children are able to talk about what they have been learning about in school. Sometimes I write the posts with the children, so they are keen to look at the pictures at home. The blog also links to the children’s learning logs, which they take home every Friday. I often comment that a piece of learning a child has written about can be found on the blog.
What has happened as a result?
I’ve had a lot of positive feedback from parents. They enjoy using the blog to stimulate discussion at home about what their children have been doing. The comments left are brilliant to share with the class, and allow me to assess what the children have remembered about activities we have undertaken. This encourages them to ask their parents to look at the blog again and leave more comments!
What would you do differently next time?
I think it’s an ongoing, evolving process. Last year I had a separate page called Onion’s Patch which I had big plans for, but never got round to getting it up and running properly. I think I am going to try again this session. Also the class have been writing notes for my dog to read ever since I posted a picture of him in the snow. I was thinking about posting pictures of him with their work – to encourage independent, spontaneous writing in class, and engage more reluctant writers.