Film: 3415

Education | 1970 | Sound | Colour


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Teaching History at school 1970's

The film starts with opening shots of: A stately home, a brick and stone neo-classical (?) building, a Tudor or Victorian mock Tudor manor house. Then an internal shot of the inside of a church or hall which has timber roof supports. Then an external view of a 'modern' comprehensive school: Bognon Regis School. The school uses outside resources to study history. One group is studying the Dukes of Richmond and their estate at Goodwood. Another group is studying poverty from Elizebethian times to the present day. Then an oblique shot of a painting of buildings. The camera then pans round and we see a glimpse of school children and then female teacher studying the painting. Cut to a close-up of another group of pupils who are mainly, if not entirely girls. They stand and write notes. Next a close-up of a male teacher talking to a group of girls (they are outside). Then cut to an internal shot in a stately home or perhaps museum: A female teacher or guide stands in a room which is lined with china cabinets, and talks to a group of girls who stand and take notes. Next a classroom scene in which the male teacher seen earlier hands out books to the pupils. More shots of teacher instructing his students individually. The teacher prepares the students for their field trip so that they will get more out of it. Cut to an external shot of the brick and stone neo-classical building seen at the beginning of the film. We are told that it is the West Sussex Records Office, Chichester. Then various scenes of the pupils being instructed by Kim Lerslie, the archivist and school liaison officer, and studying documents. The teacher is seen helping his pupils with this task. Close-up of some ring binders which are labelled: 'Poor Law', 'Railways', 'Sport', 'Agriculture', 'Inland Navigation'. Next is a low level shot of the hands of he pupils scribbling intently. A scene follows of pupils being questioned about their individual research projects. The students demonstrate who they have used the source documents in their research. Archivist explains that the documents can be used to teach a variety of subjects not just history. Cut to views of the stately home of the Dukes of Richmond which was featured earlier, and its grounds Two pupils stand in front of the entrance of the house and inspect the architecture closely. They refer to architectural plans which they are holding. Cut to scene of a group of pupils entering and being shown the paintings in the 'Long Hall' at Goodwood, by a guide. The paintings show the possesions, pastimes and varios ages of the house. Cut back to classroom where the teacher talks and the students listen. We then see individual pupils reading out loud from documents and being questioned by the teacher. Cut to external views of Chichester Work House and it's clock tower. We are told that 'as part of their study of poverty the 4th years a visiting … this building'. Close-up of the workhouse. Chapel clock. Cut to the inside of the chapel, where the teacher reads to his pupils from a document of an inmate who was ordered to be stripped to her waste and receive ten bashes with a cat of nine tails. Cut to a scene of the 4th year pupils and their teacher in the record office. Cut to a further scene of teacher and pupils in the chapel. Next a scene of some pupils on a visit to the Hospital of St. Mary, Chichester (the timber vaulted building that we saw earlier). They are being shown round by the present matron and they take notes, she tells them that it is one of the oldest hospitals in the country. We are then told that 'the class breaks up to visit the [present] residents'. Old people live at the hospital in the alms houses. Next a scene of the outside of the Tudor style building which we saw earlier. The camera zooms in to one of the windows and the we cut to a girl interviewing a female resident who, we are told, is 90 years old. The old lady tells the girl what a wonderful place to live it is. Cut to a close-up of a framed prayer on her wall: 'The Home Beautiful. God Bless Our Home'. We then see the girl asking her some more questions. Cut to the classroom where the girl, laughing or smiling nervously, plays a tape recording of the interview t the class. Then follows more classroom scenes with the pupils (who are obviously enjoying themselves) taking turns to read a 'scurrilous lampoon'. Next a scene of the teacher explaining to the class that when this document was circulated in Sussex in 1836 there were complaints that it might lead to riotous behaviour. More classroom scenes follow. Next an external view of Goodwood and a scene of a minibus travelling up its drive. Finally more scenes of the minibus driving along roads interspersed with kids saying how great and interesting studying history in this way is.

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