Suggestions for teachers using this site with their pupils/students
Key Stage 2 Activities
Key Stage 2 (Year 5 or 6) Creative Writing / ICT Unit 6D (Internet) using the Palmer Story as the Stimulus:
I told the class of Year 6 pupils a brief outline of the Palmer story and then set them the challenge of working as a reporter producing a report for the local newspaper on a specific part of his story. (N.B. This was done before the web site was completed and I told them the story. It would now be possible to get them to research part of his story from a web page chosen from the site before producing a report in their own words).
Palmer Lesson Plan for a Year 6 post-SATs project.
Key Stage 2 (Year 5 or 6) ICT Unit 5B (Analysing and asking questions: using complex searches)
Pupils can use the data from Related Topics/Other Stafford Hangings to create a database file. Currently being trialled at Flash Ley Community Primary School, for those who wish to just use a pre-prepared database pupils have built one using “Research Machine’s Information Workshop” software. To download the Information Workshop file hanging.iwf click this hyperlink . For further downloads to use with this database, select from the following:- Palmer Database Lesson Plan (for use with Year 5 but could be used in Year 4 or Year 6) or Stafford Hangings Worksheets (2 parallel worksheets for interrogating the database) or Database icons Teachers notes for using Information Workshop. All files are available as MS Word files for teachers to download.
Key Stage 2 (Year 4,5 or 6) Literacy Hour Activity (writing a letter):
Using the “Rugeley Name” story, as a stimulus, to get pupils to write a letter to Lord Palmerston requesting that Rugeley’s name be changed following the adverse publicity caused by the Palmer Case. Currently being trialled at Flash Ley Community Primary School. If successful sample writing frames and sample teacher’s notes will be available as downloadable MS Word files. Click here to download the first draft of worksheets and teacher’s notes.
Key Stage 2 and 3 Activity
The Courtroom at the Shire Hall, Stafford:
The courtroom can be visited by parties of school children. A very good educational resource pack has been produced called the Path to Justice – “a resource pack enabling the investigation of crime and punishment in Victorian Britain through real life drama inspired by cases tried at the Shire Hall, Stafford” (not Palmer). Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 packs are available from the Shire Hall, Market Square, Stafford, ST16 2LD. Telephone (01785) 278345, Fax: (01785) 278327 or Gillian Wilson (01889)881388 ext. 209.
Key Stage 3 Activities
English – Speaking and Listening:
Use the site to investigate the Palmer Story then debate “Palmer the Poisoner was an Innocent victim of the gossips”. or “Hanging can never be justified in a civilized society”.
History – A resource for the following topics:
Year 9 – Crime and Punishment topic.
Year 10 – British Crime and Punishment topic.
Using the topic of hanging from this web site a golfing friend of mine, Alan Duckett, suggested the use of poems by A. E. Houseman (1859-1936). From the book The Works of A. E. Houseman (Published by Wordsworth Poetry Library ISBN 1-85326-411-3) the poems A Shropshire Lad IX, A Shropshire Lad XLVII,
The Carpenters Son, Last Poems – XIV -The Culprit and Last Poems – XV – Eight o’clock, all deal with the subject of hanging.
Alternatively use a poem from a criminal broadside (click here for the poems in a Microsoft Word document file) or for the broadside ballads (click here for the ballads in a Microsoft Word document file) as the stimulus for poetry work based on the characters in the story or attempt to write verses warning of bad outcomes if youngsters start a life of crime or gambling or debt.
Use the information from the Stafford Hangings to build a database which can then be interrogated. (See key Stage 2 Activity above)