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How to run a school trip

Every history teacher knows that field trips help bring the subject to life but running a school trip involves a lot of organisation and planning. Trainee teachers on our Secondary History PGCE discovered this for themselves when they went on a recent trip with course leader Gabrielle Rowles as part of their learning.

The trainees toured Brighton by bus to explore the rich evidence of Black History in the city and absorb some of the hazards which might need to be mitigated when corralling a group of teens around the busy streets.

photo of Thomas Highflyer's grave

The trip began with a visit to the grave belonging to 12-year-old Thomas Highflyer. Thomas was rescued from a slave boat by the Royal Navy’s East African Anti-Slave Trade Squadron. His intriguing story came to light when the hidden grave was discovered in Woodvale Cemetery in Brighton.

The group also saw the grave of Sake Dean Mohammed who brought shampooing to Brighton and the Queen’s Hotel where he had his famous baths.

There was a stop to hear the story of Haile Selassie’s stay in the city and to view the the outside of the Font pub which was once the church of Charles Willoughby who supported the Three Kings of Bechuanaland (Botswana) to protect their country from the racist Cecil Rhodes.

There were many other mini visits including an exploration of Brighton Museum.

Gabrielle said: “Everyone had a great day and it provided valuable hands-on experience of the value that field trips bring to learning. Everyone agreed it was worth re-mapping the city with new stories from the past which are not always told.

“It was a relaxing environment where we could eat together and share our stories of teaching. Sometimes the best learning happens on the move.”

Thinking about training to teach? Become a teacher with the University of Brighton.

Thomas Highflyer grave image courtesy of Wikipedia.

Kerry Burnett • April 12, 2023

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