Florence Nightingale

We offer a choice of Florence Nightingale workshops (click the link for each listing):


In-School Day

Florence Nightingale wears a lace collar and a lace headpiece.
Florence Nightingale, circa 1860

Morning: Session One (before morning break):

  • The History Off the Page leader will speak to the children ‘in role’ as Florence Nightingale in 1854.
  • Making Activities: Florence Nightingale will ask the children to help make various items, which will need to be used in the hospital, personal items for the nurses, together with other items which are to be sold to raise funds for the War Effort: Candle holders, pill boxes, uniform brassards, diaries, lockets etc.

(View our risk assessment of the day’s activities in a new tab.)

Session two [after morning break]:

  • The children will assist Miss Nightingale to investigate lost luggage belonging to important people who are accompanying her to Scutari.

Afternoon Session

  • Role-play: running the hospital, cleaning, counselling, bandaging, cooking etc.

The children will be organised into groups for the role-play as: soldiers, nursing staff, army doctors, medical orderlies, kitchen staff, gardeners, laundry workers and reporters.

To conclude the day, Florence will speak to the children as though at the end of her life.


How You Contribute to the Day

To make the most of your children’s day, please help us with the following:

  • Adult helpers: The number of children participating determines how many work stations our Teacher brings. Please recruit a corresponding number of adults (teachers, TAs, parents) to oversee the activities and the afternoon session. (Your booking form lists the exact number needed.)
  • The school hall: Please reserve the school hall for the full day (it is not a problem if it is used for lunch).
  • Costumes: Please encourage the children to dress up in simple costumes. It helps them feel the part.

Please note that we still require adult helpers for in-school days. If this conflicts with your schools coronavirus policies, please let us know — a virtual workshop might be a better option for your school.

What to Wear

Costumes need not be complicated — we suggest the following “homemade” alternatives:

  • Boys: Either short trousers and long socks, or long trousers/track suit bottoms tucked into long socks. A collar-less shirt (cut the collar off an old one!) A waistcoat and /or a cap could also be worn.
  • Girls: Either a long dress nipped in at the waist, or a long skirt and a blouse. A white apron or a smock could also be worn. A mob cap or a hat and a shawl would complete the look.

For those who prefer, we offer a bespoke costume service through History Off the Peg. We sell inexpensive costumes for both children and adults.

View costume options and pricing on our website, www.historyoffthepeg.co.uk. Place an order by sending an e-mail containing your name, your school, the date of the event, the topic, your child’s age and your child’s size to ddworkshop@icloud.com.


Virtual Workshop

Meet Florence Nightingale. It is 1854, and Florence is preparing to take a group of nurses to Scutari Hospital in Crimea. Follow Florence on her adventure as she travels to Crimea and back.

Topics discussed include:

  • Florence Nightingale’s background
  • How she became a nurse
  • Information about the Crimean War, and how she became involved in it
  • Conditions at Scutari Hospital
  • The arrival of Jamaican nurse Mary Seacole in the Crimea and her background
  • Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole’s contributions to health care, and how they are now remembered


How Does the Workshop Work?

The new workshops consist of two key elements:

  • A box packed with individual activities kits for each child in your group (plus a few extra, just in case). The kits contain up to six activities, which the children can do at their own desks.
  • A pre-recorded video made by our knowledgeable teachers that leads the children through the narrative and gives purpose to the activities they do along the way.

The workshops can take place in your own room at your own pace – we give you access to the video for several days, so you can rewind, replay, or break up the activities as you see fit.

Our school trials so far indicate that they can fill up to half a day.

For a small additional fee, you can also choose to add on an hour of “live” teaching time with one of our qualified teachers. This extra time, which takes place via video conferencing software, is a chance to add extra engagement to the day – the children can prepare questions, take notes from the answers, discuss artefacts and explore the materials used to make them, and generally probe further into the learning.


What Activities are Included?

Shown are a small diary, a paper lantern, an employment application, a nib pen, a medal and an herbal remedy bag.
Objects the children will make during the Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole workshop.

As mentioned, each child will receive an activities kit to match the video. There are a few basic supplies such as PVA glue, scissors, and pencils that the school will need to provide, but otherwise the children will receive the necessary materials to make six projects:

  • A diary
  • A nib pen
  • An application to work at Scutari Hospital
  • A medal made of silver foil
  • An herbal remedy bag
  • A paper lantern

The workshop will also come with an information sheet for teachers, which will detail the learning outcomes, extra supplies that might be needed and possible follow-up learning.

How Much Does a Virtual Workshop Cost?

The pricing scheme is straightforward. We charge £300.00 for the first 30 children, plus £6.00 for each additional child (the costs are inclusive of 20% VAT, which the school can claim back.) Shipping is free.

The optional hour of video conferencing with one of our knowledgeable teachers can be purchased for an additional £60.00 (incl. 20% VAT).

How Do I Book a Workshop?

Please feel free to contact us by form, e-mail or telephone. Let us know the week you would like to use the workshop, and whether you would like the optional live teaching time, and we are happy to help.

Since the virtual workshops do not depend on our diary, there is no limit on when they can be ordered. Once full payment is received, we can turn them around and get them into schools within days. (Or they can be ordered well ahead and delivery scheduled – it is very flexible.)

Photos of the In-School Day: