Subject area: Social studies
Experiences and outcomes: SOC 3-04a, SOC 4-04a
The aim of this lesson is to explore how things were during the Victorian era compared to how they are today. Pupils will explore what life would have been like for them, if they had lived when John Muir was alive.
Start this activity by reading together the first part of the Genius John in a Brave New World section of the John Muir graphic novel, up to page 53, to discover how, when John Muir turned twelve, his father said he was ‘old enough to work like a man’. So he spent his days building a home and a farm in the wilderness, which meant ‘back-breaking work, every day, every hour of daylight...’
Print the Then and Now worksheet so that your class can complete this activity.
Reflecting on learning
- Had learners considered what it was like for children the same age as them over 100 years ago?
- Were they aware of the conditions children had to endure during the Victorian era of history and that some children are living in similar conditions in some parts of the world today?
- Appreciate that not all children have the same opportunities to go to school and learn
- Acknowledge how times have changed over the last 100 years in relation to child labour in the UK