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Unit 3

Present the content of History to diverse pupils in view to stimulate and promote engagement
with the subject
To make learning of History interesting and motivating for pupils, teachers must adopt a range of
teaching strategies that:
1. Address the needs of the learners
2. Cater for different learning styles
3. Make learning of History enjoyable and fun
Pedagogical repertoire
In order to teach anything to anyone, one needs a broad pedagogical repertoire. Teacher must
have the widest possible range of strategies for connecting children with subject matter.
The pedagogical repertoire consists of three aspects supporting what is to be learned: facts,
concepts, skills, processes, beliefs and attitudes.
Aspect 1: Approaches, activities, examples and illustrations for representing what is to be
Aspect 2: wide range of teaching approaches: storytelling, Socratic dialogue, drama, role play,
simulation, demonstration, modeling, problemsolving, singing, playing games, knowledge
transformation, question and answer, instructing, explaining and giving feedback.
Aspect 3: Generic strategies and skills (acting skills)

Lesson Plan
A lesson plan is a teachers detailed
description of the course of instruction





planning of lessons is the key to

effective teaching:
1. Teacher know in advance the
subject matter and mode of
delivery in classroom
2. Teacher have an idea how to:
Introduce topic
Develop key concepts
Correlate concepts to


real life situations

Conclude lesson
Teacher enter the class with

Elements of an effective lesson plan:

1. Title of the lesson
2. Amount of time required to complete the lesson
3. List of required materials
4. Objectives
Behavioral objectives (what the student is expected to)
Knowledge objectives (what the students is expected to know)
5. The set or lead in to the lesson:
Designed to focus students on the skill or concept about to be instructed
Common sets include showing pictures or models, asking leading questions, or
reviewing previously taught lessons
6. The instructional component:
describes the sequence of events which will take place as the lesson is delivered
7. Independent practice
allows students to practice the skill or extend the knowledge on their own
8. The summary:
opportunity for the teacher to wrap up the session and for the students to pose
unanswered questions
9. Evaluation (formative and summative in form of questions or instruction)

Check for mastery of the instructional skills

10. Analysis
Allows the teacher to reflect on the lesson and answer questions such as:
a) what went well
b) what needs improving
c) how students reacted to the lesson
Teaching Strategies:
Two important considerations:

History deals with a certain level of abstraction

Children at primary level have difficulty in understanding abstract ideas.

The task of the teacher is to render the abstract ideas concrete which children can observe,
understand, handle and compare.
Guiding principle in developing strategies and techniques for History teaching:
1. Story telling
Story telling has for a long time been a common practice at pre-primary and at lower primary
Tell or read a story:

offer children insights into their own lives and help them to imagine worlds beyond their

helps children to imagine what it feels like to be someone else and to see things from

other points of view

Children to 'participate' actively in the story telling, comments on the characters or the
story itself, or even to find an ending to a story. Children may also share stories they

Choosing appropriate stories

Selection of stories should be done with caution. Stories suitable for developing early historical
concepts and skills should be chosen that will hold the attention of children.. In the language
lessons in Standards I and II, teachers can also relate simple stories based on historical events:

Franois Leguat and his friends in Rodrigues

The Dutch and the dodo
Pirates and treasures
Maroon slaves in the forests
The childhood of Dr Seewoosagur Ramgoolam
Pieter Both and the shipwreck

Stories offer children opportunities for:

Developing oral, descriptive and narrative skills
Drawing out experiences and knowledge in their own language and culture
Recalling and making sense of their past experience
Acquiring the language and conventions of time and place
Gaining insight into other people's thoughts and emotions (empathy)
Identifying similarities and differences between past and present
Understanding that events have causes as well as consequences
Making judgments about persons and events (interpretation)
Realizing that pictures and print contain valuable information (evidence)
Anticipating sequences and predicting outcomes
Imagining different worlds
Motivating children to role play, draw and paint, read and write, and model making
Stories can be used at key moments in the course of the topic
Teacher can consider starting the school day with a story
Stories motivate the children in their follow up activities, as children tend to carry the
excitement of a good story into other learning contexts.
Story can be in any language
Story can be divided into the beginning, the middle and the end
Teacher may stop in the middle and ask the children to think of a possible ending. This will

stimulate children to use their imagination to complete the story.

Story serves as an opportunity to exercise their imagination
It helps to understand that a story is a sequence of events
It also trains their listening skills
Teachers have to ensure that children listen, recall and also repeat certain words. They can
use appropriate word-cards and pictures.

Discussion and questioning follow story-telling. The value of stories in fostering historical
attitudes, concepts and skills depends rather more on follow - up discussion and activities than on
the simple telling of the tale.

Story-telling can also be followed by drawing and painting by pupils and their works are then
exhibited on the walls.
2. Brainstorming and Concept Map: a teaching strategy that is applicable at all stages in
At the beginning of each new lesson, teachers normally carry out a preparatory exercise known
as brainstorming and oral discussion where the whole class is involved.
It is important for teachers to consider the previous knowledge and experiences of pupils on the
topic. They encourage pupils to express themselves and show what they already know about the
subject. Teacher list the key words on the board. New terms are also introduced. A simple
concept map is thus elaborated on the board. For example:

While teaching voyages of discovery, the map of the Indian Ocean is studied. The map
study will provide an understanding of the isolation of the Mascarene Islands and the

distance from countries with settled population like Madagascar, Africa and India.
At the same time, it will provide an opportunity for the teacher to explain that, although,
many civilizations existed in different countries around the Indian Ocean, yet, Mauritius

remained uninhabited because of the long distances from these countries.

Teachers need to have background information on the relation between trade and voyages
of discovery. Children need to understand that such voyages led to the discovery of the
Mascarene Islands.

Brainstorming and concept mapping should to be applied to all lessons by the teachers.
3. Picturing the past: Images
Images are a highly effective resource for getting children to read to talk and learn about
the past.
Children are surrounded by visual images in their everyday lives.
Nurturing their ability to see and observe might well be as important as teaching them
reading, writing and counting.
Visual literacy skills play a crucial role in developing modes of imagination which
privilege artistic, literary and historical creativity.
Images offer children:

Opportunities to talk about their own experience of the past, of different places and

A source for comparing past and present and for different interpretations, information and

knowledge about people, places and events

Stimulus for the development of the powers of reasoning, questioning, predicting
Opportunities for discussing what can and cannot be learnt from the pictures

(incompleteness of evidence)
Opportunities for comparing similarities and differences between different kinds of visual
images (photographs, paintings)

Example 1:
1. Show a few large pictures and discuss with the whole class
2. Follow up with more in-depth sessions in small groups
3. Children can start by simply talking about what they see in one or two of the pictures
4. Allowing children the freedom to speculate about what they see and understand in the
5. Helps them to take risks, exchange ideas and learn from each other's thoughts
6. Introduce some contemporary postcards or photographs to stimulate a simple comparison
between present and past or new and old
7. Ask the children to compare two pictures, asking them:
What can you see in the pictures?
What do you think is happening?
Does anything in the pictures remind you of something?
When do you think the pictures were taken (nowadays, a long time ago)?
Which one do you think is new and which one is old?
Also ask questions about specific aspects of each picture.
Different point of view
Give a small group of children one of the pictures and ask them to narrate the story they think
it tells. Their versions can be compared and discussed with the whole class.
Differences between times in the past
As children acquire greater experience of reading pictures, they can be given progressively
more sophisticated tasks.
At this stage, getting the picture right (that is, historically accurate) is less important
than the confidence to ask questions, speculate about possible alternatives

Children's historical statements are bound to be tentative and provisional

Give them frequent opportunities to revisit the pictures in the light of their developing
visual literacy.

Example: Activity-Observing pictures

A lesson on the nature of activities in the sugarcane fields, in the past and in the present.
Children may be asked to consider the characteristics of the evolution that have taken place.
4. Experiencing the past: Artefacts
Artefacts are real things made by people. Like visual images they are part of children's everyday
In their homes and communities, children have already observed, examined, handled and
preserved objects which may be cultural artefacts
Artefacts have the capacity to engage children's curiosity and interest to want to know more. By
working with real objects, handling, discussing, remembering and making comparisons, children
can begin to understand:

A variety of materials and what they are used for

How people perceived the world in which they lived
Differences and similarities between our needs today and those of people in the past
Similarities and differences in cultural values
The physical effects of time on things made by humans.

Artefacts past and present:

Avoid conveying messages of inferiority and superiority related to old and new
By adopting a global perspective emphasize that people in many parts of the world still
find certain things that we have discarded.

Organize activity where Children can investigate the artefacts directly, guided by the
following questions:
What does it look like?
What does it feel like?
What color is it?
What shape does it have?
Does it have any writing on it?
What is it made for?
What was it used for?

Following the discussion, children can draw an artefact of their choice and write a few things
about it. The same object can be drawn from different angles, encouraging children to represent
size and shape accurately in their drawings so they record their experience of the artefact.
Visits to appropriate museums provide yet another way for children to investigate artefacts as
material remains of the past.
For example: while teaching the topic Life and Times of Indian Immigrants teachers can explain
that the life and times of Indian immigrants was difficult. Indians came to Mauritius to work as
laborers in the sugar cane fields.
The lesson can be introduced by brainstorming children. They can be explained about the need
for laborers.
Indians lived on sugar estates and did various jobs in the fields: removing trees and rocks, tilling the soil
and planting cane. During the harvest, they had to cut the cane and carry the cane on carts to the factory.
On the estates, the Indians lived in huts which were small and not well ventilated. They had little
leisure and rest.
For many children, it is difficult to imagine the life led by Indian immigrants on the estates. One of
the ways of understanding that period is through pictures and documentaries. The other is to visit the
Mahatma Gandhi Folk Museum, where artefacts of that period are exposed. Pupils will have the
opportunity to see with their own eyes objects (artefacts) used in the agricultural tools, to kitchen
utensils, and also object having to do with culture and traditions of the Indians.

5. Fieldwork-Looking for evidence

Fieldwork is an important activity that brings learners to come in touch with real

places, where people lived or events happened.

Children are explained that History is not learnt from books and documents only, but

also from the observation of old buildings, archaeological remains, pictures and films.
Fieldwork is an important opportunity to bring 'life' to history teaching. It is a
practical activity that is linked with first hand evidence. During the fieldwork the
teacher acts as a guide and helps the children to observe. Children write in their

notebooks what they see.

After fieldwork and visit to the museum, they can work on the photographs taken or

any objects collected during the field work.

A. The Locality
One form of fieldwork deals with local history.


Children are gradually exposed to what is happening in the locality where they live
They start to understand the world that lies outside their home
They ask questions on the purpose of buildings they observe.
lower primary, school children can visit the locality and explore the neighborhood of the

At upper primary more activities are carried out in the locality.
For example:
Children in Rodrigues can visit any village and note changes in agriculture, road

transport, private and public buildings and the materials used to build them.
Children are required to find out when the main public buildings were set up, whether
any form of transport existed in the past and how people carried the produce of the

land to Port Mathurin.

Teachers help children to find out about life in the area in the past:
Do you know when the first bus started to run between Port Mathurin and the

When was the first hospital built and how people went there?
What forms of transport existed in the past between the different inland

localities, and between coastal settlements?

B. Outside the Locality
Preparation before the fieldwork:

Brainstorming: to find out what the children already know about the place they are going

to visit
Prepare a questionnaire to be used by pupils during fieldwork
A study of the map of the area to be visited is carried out as it involves both History and

C. During Fieldwork
Pupils are required to:

Keep a notebook
Answer a questionaire
Record informations in many ways: drawing, photographs, interviews
Teacher explains the importance of the site visited
Give instruction concerning what to observe: buildings, roads, canals, shops, agricultural

or materials used for buildings

D. Follow up in class
The next day in class Pupils work on notes they took during fieldwork
Questionaires are analyzed
Photographs and drawings are diisplayed on wall charts
6. Drama and role play
An excellent medium for teaching history
Offers opportunity to learners to construct imaginary worlds from different times and

Pupils must be provided with historical knowledge before role play a history situation
For example to role play an Indian indentured laborer working in a sugarcane filed in 19 th

century, the pupils should have knowledge about:

Place of origin of indentured laborer
Family in India
Voyage to Mauritius
Arrival at Port-Louis
The work on sugar estates
The treatment meted out to them
Teacher can write the scripts. Song and dance can be included relevant to the theme
7. The role of ICT in History
ICT provides a range of tools that can significantly extend and enrich teachers

instructional strategies and support student learning in history.

ICT tools include: multimedia, database, websites, digital cameras, specialized software
etc. computer programs can help to: collect, organize and sort gathered data write, edit

and present report on their findings.

ICT can be used to network with other students from other schools and abroad thus
bringing the global community in the local classroom

Use of ICT:
ICT programs help pupils throughout the inquiry process to gather; organize information
and communicate their findings
The use of ICT tools such as digital camera while engaging in field activity
Use simulations through technology when field studies are not feasible
Pupils should be encouraged to use ICT to support and communicate their findings
Current ICT tools are useful both as research tools and as creative media that enable
To obtain evidence from digital atlases
To access to archives, museums and heritage sites around the world
To gather statistics relevant to local, national and global issues
To use digital cameras, interactive white boards, projectors and the Sankore for
multimedia presentations that communicate their findings in creative and
engaging ways
Though internet is a powerful learning tool, there are potentials risks attached to it.
ICT tools are also useful to teachers for:

Classroom instruction
Design of curriculum units that contain varied approaches to learning in order to meet
diverse needs


Child centered approach is useful in a number of ways. It helps pupils to develop an

interest and motivates them to participate actively in the learning process.

The variety of approaches allows pupils to develop more skills like: discussion, enquiry,

recording and communication.

Teacher can be creative in devising numerous ways of making teaching and learning of
History enjoyable.

Key questions:
Why is it important for the teacher to plan his/her lesson?
Why should teachers adopt a variety of teaching strategies in class?

Name and discuss about a few teaching strategies used in class.

Reflect upon the advantages of using various teaching strategies