Virtual Zoom Visits
Virtual zoom visits are offered as an hour, half and full day sessions. They are made up of alternating character tales, or specialist demonstrations, and audience participation activities. The activity timings are quite short aiming to ask the audience to consider what they have just seen and heard in different ways; reinforcing learning as we go. Consequently, it is suggested that a quarter day of curriculum time is set aside for immediate follow-up; allowing extra time to go back, consider/finish core activities and try an extension challenge.
Virtual visits include:
- Planning the visit for you,
- Being emailed activity and hint sheets about a fortnight before the virtual visit,
- About a week before the actual date a preplanning zoom session to:
- do a tech check,
- tweak any planning/timing issues,
- 07:30 or 08:00 tech check on the morning of the virtual visit,
- The Virtual Visit,
- Follow -up question and answer by email; if the audience would like to send an email,
- Evaluation and check back in case follow-up is needed on teacher knowledge or how to develop historical skills.
Hourly sessions are: 9:00 – 10:15, 11:00 – 12:15 and 13:15 – 14:30. These 75 minute blocks allow some flexibility to cope with usual school timings. And sufficient time between them to allow set up for another session. Cost is £80 per hour session.
Half day sessions with the same character/theme, choose between 9:00 – 11:45 with a break for playtime or 13:15 – 15:15. Cost of a half day zoom is £130
A full zoom day, with the same character/theme,assumes 9:00 – 15:00 with the usual school breaks for play-time and lunchtime. Cost for a full day is £180.
Schools booking two or three consecutive hour virtual visits with the same character /theme would be discounted to the lower cost of a half or full day, as appropriate
School Based Visits
Enliven your lessons and entertain your pupils by receiving a costumed visitor from the past. Watch the effect as history walks in to your school and “hotseats” the audience’s questions. Be prepared for a vocal journey that can take you from games to wigs, back to eating and then jumps to toilets!
The visit starts when a relieved character has a break from travelling. Some of the bundles they carry are unwrapped to reveal interesting artefacts. A gossip at heart the character is pleased to tell stories about their life and times, choosing subjects that the audience appears curious about. Where possible, children are involved in dressing-up and role-play. No visit is ever the same!
How the Day Works
The character will visit for a half or whole school day (with breaks). Presentations can be as short as 30 minutes or for as long as your children will sit (up to 2 hours). Several presentations can be given over the day. Any extra time could be used for other activities such as questioning the historian, observational drawing by children, discussing classroom follow-up work with teachers. Your choice!
Artefact handling by the children is a key feature of a character’s visit. Between 40 and 60 items are brought on a visit. This enables the children to work individually, in pairs, or in groups as appropriate to their learning style. Supported by the visitor they analyse a range of artefacts to investigate past ways of life. The children are encouraged to develop their questioning skills by becoming historical detectives in their own right.
Workshops are another way of enabling children to look at life in the past. They complement artefact handling to produce a more rounded view of past life. The character (or her historian alter-ego) can run workshops with the children in conjunction with the teachers. Or teachers can opt to run these themselves whilst the character works with another group/class.
The workshops usually come boxed with everything needed for the activity – equipment, materials, consumables, instructions, extension ideas, teaching points and where appropriate examples.You provide the space and person to run the activity. It helps to look through and try the activity during the set up session but it not essential. At the end of the session you are asked to repack the box ready for transport. Any breakages let the presenter know.
Additional information on the workshops available with each character is presented on the character’s page.