Resources for Primary School
The mysterious story of Tom Highflyer enables students to uncover local history from the experience of a young Black boy who was brought from East Africa to Brighton and attended a local school. These educational resources also allow students to explore the historical process and how historians create a narrative using incomplete evidence and employing tentative language to make their claims.
The lessons have been popular with primary students from year 4 upwards because they enable pupils to conduct an independent enquiry using authentic primary sources. The lessons can be a springboard for studies into Victorian childhood, slavery, citizenship and identity, or Brighton life in the 1860s.
Resources for Secondary School
The mysterious story of Tom Highflyer enables students to explore local history from the experience of a young Black boy who was brought from East Africa to Brighton and attended a local school.
There are many possibilities for teaching:
- Interrogating sources in order to answer an historical enquiry question.
- Exploring the concept of interpretations in its technical curricular sense as ‘how people in later times have reconstructed and presented the past’ (Counsell 2013).
- Examining the utility of sources to answer different questions.
- Discussing the perspectives of Black History and identity within diversity.
- Demonstrating the process of local research using a range of resources.
- Linking Tom’s story to other individuals in Brighton and Hove in the late 19th century such as Sarah Forbes Bonetta (similarity and difference).
- Considering Tom’s significance and relation to Brighton and Hove as a Sanctuary City.
- Exploring historical empathy.
These teaching resources have been very popular with secondary pupils in years 8 and 9 partly because they can identify with Tom’s age and they have the chance to conduct an authentic and genuinely intriguing investigation.
FOR THE CLASSROOM
Our educational specialist has created free resources for teachers to use in the classroom to explore the story of Thomas’s life from a historical perspective. They are designed to inspire and educate young minds ages 10/11 (Key Stage 2) and age 14 (Key Stage 3).
ABOUT THE PROJECT
The project aims to honour the life of an African slave boy who lived and died in Brighton 148 years ago. Initiated by Brighton & Hove Black History in partnership with Brighton & Hove City Council and Woodvale Cemetery and funded by Heritage Lottery Fund.