We provide a range of workshops for school groups, on-site at the West Yorkshire History Centre, to explore the archive collections in an interactive and hands on way. The workshops are cross-curricula and cover subject areas such as local history, geography, science, numeracy and literacy.
Back to School
KS1 and KS2
Pupils will explore school life in the past using archive documents. They will use map reading skills to discover what the area around their school was like previously. They will look at logbooks from the archive and have a go at handwriting practice using historic equipment. Finally they will recreate a Victorian school photo.
Making the ‘Merrie City’
Pupils will explore the city of Wakefield over the past 200 years. Using a giant, historic floor map of Wakefield and archival documents they will build up a picture of the city. They will use their findings to complete a timeline showing how the city has changed.
Dig for Victory: A Child's Life in WW2
Pupils will explore what life was like for children living in Wakefield during World War Two. Using archival documents they will learn about life in school, including how the war affected everyday life and what protection was in place such as air raid shelters. They will write a response to an evacuee who was sent to Wakefield during the war.
Archive Doctors: Caring for our Collections
Pupils will explore conservation and find out what our conservators do and why they do it. They will experiment on documents to discover how best to care for them and learn handling and packaging skills to keep documents safe for the future.
KS3 and KS4
Pupils will use archival records including the Thomas Taylor coroner reports to investigate unexplained deaths in Victorian Wakefield. They will explore the working and social conditions of the time and reach a verdict on the deaths.
A Royalist Stronghold
Pupils will use archival records to explore the role of Pontefract Castle in the English Civil War. They will learn techniques in palaeography to allow them to read old handwriting. Using two historical they will explore the sieges at Pontefract Castle. Finally they will write their own charter.
Conserving the Past
Pupils will explore conservation as a career and find out what our conservators do and why they do it. They will experiment on documents to discover how best to care for them and learn handling and packaging skills to keep documents safe for the future.
To book a workshop or for further information please contact the Education and Outreach team to arrange a date and discuss your visit. We recommend a pre-visit where you will meet one of our team who will talk you through the workshop and show you the building. This can be arranged as part of the booking process.
All workshops are charged at £62.
Tel: 0113 535 0141
WYAS has worked in partnership with Wakefield Museums and Wakefield Libraries to create downloadable learning resources for teachers. They have been designed for secondary teachers however, the information could easily be adapted for use in primary schools. Each pack is based on a topic and contains images and information about items from our collections that can be used when exploring these topics in schools. Please note this information is only to be used for educational purposes. The resources are on Pontefract Workhouse. Wakefield Workhouse, Industrial Wakefield and World War II. Please click on each subject to download the resource pack.