The session begins with pupils examining a selection of original documents from the time of Henry VIII to work out what he was really like as a person and a king. Documents used include an illuminated portrait of Henry VIII as a young man, a document with his own signature on it and a description of the decorations used on jousting horses at tournaments.
The first activity involves pupils in having a go at reading original Tudor handwriting to work out what images were used on the jousting horses. Help is provided to enable the pupils to do this; they enjoy the challenge of working out what the words say and usually do very well - often better than their teachers!
Pupils then get to place a copy of their image on a life size replica of a jousting horse to recreate what it would have looked like. Finally we discuss each image with the pupils: we get them to think about what the image meant in Tudor times, why Henry chose to use it on his horse and what it tells us about him as a king.
For the second activity, we have four replica sets of clothes for rich and poor Tudor boys and girls. Four pupils are chosen to try on the outfits, while the rest of the class learn to identify various items of clothing, what they were called and how they were made, and assist their classmates with getting dressed.
This session can be delivered as a
- Virtual classroom