International Day of Democracy – 15th September

The International Day of Democracy provides an opportunity to review the state of democracy in the world. Democracy is as much a process as a goal, and only with the full participation of and support by the international community, national governing bodies, civil society and individuals, can the ideal of democracy be made into a reality to be enjoyed by everyone, everywhere.

Democracy provides the natural environment for the protection and effective realization of human rights. These values are embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and further developed in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which enshrines a host of political rights and civil liberties underpinning meaningful democracies.

The link between democracy and human rights is captured in article 21(3) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states:

“The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.”

The video below from the United Nations sets out what the International Day of Democracy is and why it was created, this overview also provides information on what Democracy is and the part that the United Nations plays.

A great resource to use on this day is British Values from LGfL. British Values were first defined in the Prevent Strategy as “democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs”. But all too often, teachers feel they have inadequate support and resourcing with which to develop this important part of the broader school curriculum.

We have sought to meet this need by providing high-quality, safe and relevant teaching materialsthat foster deeper understanding and informed debate amongst young people. We do not aim to deliver a definitive view for teachers and learners to ‘accept and learn’, but to enable discussion in a safe, tolerant and supportive environment. The video below explains what is democracy

‘Developing British Values’ is both a stand alone learning resource in its own right and also as a gateway to other ideas, assets and materials (via the Related themes and Further assets & resources menus) that can be used for one-off, dedicated activities, or for embedding core themes into a planned series of lessons.

This time of year is also when most schools are electing their school councils, there is a short overview from CBBC Newsround which explains what a school council is and the roles, perfect for showing to younger children or new Year 3 pupils. Children’s Rights Wales have also produced a great pack for schools councils, with a range of games, ideas and an activity pack for staff and pupils.

To inspire pupils why not watch a video from Kid President – the one below is entitled A Pep Talk from Kid President:

Parliament UK has a fantastic range of resources for looking at democracy.  The free teaching resources include videos, downloadable lesson plans, assemblies, interactive whiteboard resources, loan boxes and publications. Their interactive games are also ideal for use both in the classroom or as homework activities www.parliamentgames.co.uk.

Alongside the resources, you can also book a tour of The Houses of Parliament. A range of free CPD opportunities are on offer for primary and secondary teachers as well as trainee teachers; including Westminster based CPD sessions, in-school training days, online courses and their annual Teacher’s Institute residential programme based in Westminster.

The British Council have also produced a range of resources for schools. Commonwealth, Parliament and Democracy resource created in collaboration with the Commonwealth Secretariat and Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, will help to provide students with factual information and cross-curricular activities, enabling them to learn and think critically about the Commonwealth, its parliament, and the topic of democracy more broadly. The activities also aim to expand students’ knowledge and understanding, provide opportunities to develop their core skills, all the while encouraging them to explore and reflect on local and global issues. Each unit contains information for teachers, ideas for discussion and suggestions for cross-curricular activities. These can be used as starting points in individual lessons, or as elements of a larger cross-curricular joint project involving collaboration over a number of subjects with a partner school overseas.

They also have a resource entitled Polling day for Primary and Secondary schools explains why voting matters, who’s allowed to vote and looks at democracy around the world.

The Museum of London is running an exhibition entitled Votes for Women marking the centenary of the 1918 Act that gave some women the right to vote for the first time. Dedicated to those who campaigned tirelessly for over 50 years to achieve votes for women, the exhibition features iconic objects from the Museum’s vast Suffragette collection, including Emmeline Pankhurst’s hunger strike medal. At the heart of the display is a powerful, newly commissioned film that reflects on the contemporary relevance of the militant campaign that continues to inspire, shock and divide opinion.

Museum of London – Suffragette Poster Parade 1911

What ever you are doing for International Day of Democracy, please share via our twitter or Facebook pages, it would be great to hear from you.

 

The Romans – New AR and VR content.

The Romans in London resource has been a favourite amongst History teachers across the key stages for the last couple of years with over 200,000 page views since it was launched. This comprehensive resource has now  been updated with both AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) content.

Using incredible Augmented Reality, you can now see first hand examples of Roman life.  There are 10 trigger images in total that can be used alongside the Romans in London resource, they include working out calculations using Roman numerals, labelling a Roman Soldier, listening as Julius Ceasar takes us through important events as well as firing a first century Roman Balista.

You can see the AR in action in the videos below:

You can download the AR app for iOS devices here and for Android here

The VR element of the resource places the children on Hadrian’s Wall on a cold snowy night, using the app for either android or iOS devices and a compatible head set, the children can be transported back in time and are placed on top of the wall guarding the camp, to enjoy the full experience it is recommended that headphones are used.

The Romans in London resources are structured into the following sections:

  • The Roman invasion and the army
  • Boudica & the growth of Roman settlements in the London area
  • Everyday life
  • Baths & entertainment
  • Religion
  • Transport, trade & industry
  • Interactive Map of Roman find sites

The resource also features an interactive map of Roman London with Google Maps integration and Streetview showing the major Roman find sites. This simple tool allows any child in any location in London to explore the Roman Legacy wherever they live or go to school. 

High resolution images and High quality video resources including:

  • Gladiatorial battle re-enactments
  • The major Roman remains in the City of London
  • Replicas and real artefacts uncovered from archaeological discoveries in London
  • High resolution photographs courtesy of Museum of London Picture Library and Museum ofLondon Archaeology
  • Reconstructions of what Roman London might have looked like, maps and images of artefactscourtesy of Museum of London Picture Library

You can watch a summary walkthrough video below

and also the trailer can be found here:

The Museum of London also offer schools a range of workshops and sessions for schools that are studying the Romans over the next two terms, sessions include: Roman Amphitheatre, Hands on Romans and written in bone, you can find out more about the sessions here.

Spotlight on The Tudors

The Tudors in London resource offers a range of resources to support teachers in delivering this part of the History curriculum. It aims to develop an understanding of a historical context in which to appreciate how events of 500 years ago still impact London life today.

Featuring over 140 high-quality videos clips and over 60 high-resolution images from the Museum of London Archaeological Archive, Royal Collection Trust and key Tudor locations in London. The resource also features a curriculum mapping tool and a whole range of lesson plans to support the teaching of this subject at Key Stage 2. 

The video below gives an introduction to the resource:

High quality video resources include:

  • Re-enactment of the eve of the marriage of Kathryn Parr to Henry VIII
  • The major Tudor remains including Hampton Court Palace, the Rose Theatre, Charterhouse and on the streets of the City of London
  • Replicas and real artefacts uncovered from archaeological discoveries in London

High resolution images

  • High resolution photographs courtesy of Museum of London Picture Library and Museum ofLondon Archaeology
  • Reconstructions of what Tudor London might have looked like, maps and images of artefacts courtesy of Museum of London Picture Library and the Royal Collection Trust.

The resources are structured into the following sections

  • The Geography of Tudor London
  • Health and Hygiene
  • Trade and Industry
  • Clothing
  • Entertainment
  • Eating and Drinking
  • Home Life and Houses
  • Religion
  • Royalty and Palaces
  • Crime and Punishment

Interactive Map of Tudor London

The resource also features an interactive map of Tudor London with Google Maps integration and Streetview showing the major Tudor find sites and locations or relevance.

Alongside using this resource, teachers can also make use of the fantastic Audio Network which features a range of tracks that can be used to support your teaching of The Tudors including GreenSleeves and Cloth of Gold. The tracks can be used as a background to presentations, or to listen to and compare with music today and they could also be used within dance lessons.

When teaching The Tudors, a lot of teachers also choose to study Shakespeare alongside this topic.  LGfL have a range of resources to support with this.

Early Shakespeare features Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  The two plays are broken down into one bite-sized sentence per scene, using the first 100 high-frequency words. This allows learners to easily follow, understand and remember the stories, and helps ensure access to the curriculum for all. Pupils can watch at their own pace, and opt to turn on or off the accompanying text and symbols, animated characters bring each scene to life, with differentiated activities to help include all learners.

The BBC has granted access to its collection of TV and radio programmes (over 500 from the past50 years), as well as over 1,000 high-quality photographs of some of the world’s leading Shakespearean actors and actresses in some of the most iconic performances.

The collection is only accessible in school due to licensing restrictions, but the full listings can be browsed from any location (videos and audio will not open outside school).

The archive is now live at BBCshakespeare.lgfl.net

Cambridge School Shakespeare features production photographs from a wide range of stage and film versions, designed to support students’ exploration of interpretation,staging and performance. Fully differentiated for use with students aged from 11 to 19, each play includes over 100 pages ofeditable, printable support material including lesson ideas, worksheets and production reviews.

The Museum of London are running a Tudor London Study day for KS3 students in the spring term next year. The session will cover the following:

It’s 1529 in Tudor London and Henry VIII’s break from the church and divorce from Catherine of Aragon is imminent. Explore our Medieval London gallery and handle real objects to investigate what London life was like at this critical time.

You’ll meet imposing Tudor monarch, Henry VIII, in this performance. Participate as a member of his court – and dare to advise him on the complex issues surrounding his break from the church…

You can find out more about the session and to book here.

If you have used The Tudors in your classroom we would love to hear from you, let us know using the hashtag #spotlight #Tudors on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook