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Titanic storytelling: Polar the Titanic bear

Key facts

  • Suitable for: Early Years Foundation Stage, Key Stage 1
  • Subjects: Literacy, Understanding of the World, English, History
  • Session type: Museum led
  • Duration: 60 minutes
  • Class size (maximum): 30
  • Venue: Merseyside Maritime Museum

Summary

Any early years or key stage one class studying English and or History would engage with this highly interactive education session about a little boy and his favourite toy. The children learn about the Titanic by taking part in the storytelling and playing different parts from the story.

Available to book Monday to Friday at 10:15am, 11:30am and 1:15pm.

Further details

young boy in a sailor's hat with a polar bear soft toy

 © Paula Parker

The session begins with a warm welcome to the museum and a discussion to find out what the children may, or may not already know about the famous ship and its local Liverpool connections.  The session moves on to explore what life was like one hundred years ago, looking at travel and toys in particular. 

The children are then invited to take part in the story of Polar the Titanic Bear. The story is adapted from the original written by a Titanic first class passenger, Daisy Corning Stone Speddon, who survived the fateful voyage, along with her family.  She then went on to write Polar the Titanic Bear as a Christmas present for her son Douglas. 

The children learn about the Titanic by taking part in the storytelling and playing different characters including Douglas, Daisy and a sailor. The children are shown what actions and words they need to perform and they have the opportunity to try on and handle replica costume, hats, and of course a toy polar bear. All of the children join in with the story at certain parts and have the opportunity to handle the objects. Through the story they learn about different aspects of the Titanic and the subsequent rescue in a lifeboat. 

Curriculum links

Early Years Foundation Stage

  • Communication and language
  • Personal, social and emotional development
  • Literacy
  • Understanding the world

Key Stage 1 – History

  • Pupils should develop an awareness of the past, using common words and phrases relating to the passing of time.
  • They should use a wide vocabulary of everyday historical terms.
  • They should ask and answer questions, choosing and using parts of stories and other sources to show that they know and understand key features of events.
  • Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality.

English Spoken Language

  • Listen and respond appropriately to adults and their peers.
  • Ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge.
  • Maintain attention and participate actively in collaborative conversations, staying on topic and initiating and responding to comments.
  • Participate in discussions, presentations, performances, role play, improvisations and debates.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

Pupils will:

  • Understand the difference in transport between 100 years ago and today.
  • Recognise that people’s clothes and toys were different between then and now.
  • Understand that this is a true story, and the people and events depicted where real and not imaginary.

Skills

Pupils will:

  • Join in the story at appropriate times using repeated phrases and actions which improves confidence in participating in a group activity.
  • Learn new words important in the story.

Concepts

Pupils will:

  • Grasp the key importance of recognising things that happened in the past.
  • Appreciate the importance of the Titanic disaster as part of world history.

Attitudes

Pupils will:

  • Empathise with the characters situation.
  • View the Maritime Museum as an enjoyable and interesting place to visit.