Tag Archives: history of education

It’s Sir Percy’s birthday!

Today we celebrate the anniversary of Sir T. Percy Nunn’s birthday for he was born on 28th December 1870 – the year in which the 1870 Education Act which promised a national education system was passed. Thomas Percy Nunn was … Continue reading

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The Christmas Box

The tradition of having a Christmas tree goes back to the early1800s when Queen Charlotte (queen to George III) set up the tradition of having a candle-lit tree, with presents and ribbons hanging on the branches inside the palace at Windsor. Soon after this, the idea of the Christmas box which children could open on Christmas Eve started. The two soon became familiar rituals in the homes of many well-to-do families. Continue reading

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If childhood is an invention, how did children once grow up?

‘Education’ stands for blackboards and computers, school benches and sculleries, china dolls or rag dolls, pies and puddings and a roast goose or bowls of pallid porridge. At the Institute of Education, beyond schooling, studying, and training, ‘Education’ encompasses bringing … Continue reading

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How wooden bricks can build a world : the Play Well exhibition at the Wellcome Gallery

Little wooden cubes and balls, plain and smooth, tiny wooden squares and triangles, painted in primary colours, all elevated to the status of exhibits in glass cases. Contemporary art perhaps? Much better. The next case shows a wooden model of … Continue reading

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Off to work in bowler-hats and bonnets

The blurred black-and-white photograph showed a man in a bowler-hat with a walking-stick rushing up a multi-storey staircase to demonstrate how quickly he climbs up in his career in a certain bank. It caught my eye in the 1963 edition … Continue reading

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Two Years in the Infant School—a review by Paul May

I was surprised when the children’s author, Paul May, contacted me about a post I had written on Enid Blyton as an educationalist, for once written and published, these posts are often forgotten!  I was also curious about what he thought … Continue reading

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BBC Broadcasts and ‘Back in Time for School’

Back in Time for School takes a group of fifteen children and their teachers back through time to experience what schooling was like at different times, from the Victorian period up to the 1990s. Last summer, I was involved in doing some … Continue reading

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An eminent female academic at the IOE: Clotilde von Wyss (1871-1938)

I have been doing some research on some of the women teacher trainers at the IOE  in order to understand their contribution to pedagogical practice in London during the interwar years.   One of the teacher trainers I have been most intrigued … Continue reading

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‘A Splendid College’: Institutional Histories of Teacher Training Colleges

The Institute of Education Library has a large collection (approximately 2,500 books) of education institutional histories. These include histories of schools, colleges and universities. For the joint ICHRE (International Centre for Historical Research in Education) and FNLA (Friends of the … Continue reading

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“Whip top! Whip top!”: play throughout the seasons… and times

How would you find out about games and toys in former times? Are there instructions for families on how to make a spinning top or a rag doll? Are there essays on the origin of obscure nursery rhymes? And were … Continue reading

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