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What was life like for a Victorian child?

Life for children in Britain during Victorian times was very different to life for children today.Read the information, watch the video and answer the question below.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4gKGybl071I

 

 

  • Why did children go to work?

Many Victorian children were poor and worked to help their families. Few people thought this strange or cruel. Families got no money unless they worked, and most people thought work was good for children. The Industrial Revolution created new jobs, in factories and mines. Many of these jobs were at first done by children, because children were cheap – a child was paid less than adults (just a few pennies for a week’s work).

·         When did children start work?

Many children started work at the age of 5, the same age as children start school today. They went to work as soon as they were big enough. Even a tiny child could feed chickens. Older brothers and sisters took small children to work, perhaps to a factory at the end of the street. Other children worked at home, doing jobs such as washing, sewing, sticking labels on bottles or making brushes.

·         What was a Victorian classroom like?

There were maps and perhaps pictures on the wall. There would be a globe for geography lessons, and an abacus to help with sums. Children sat in rows and the teacher sat at a desk facing the class. At the start of the Victorian age, most teachers were men, but later many women trained as teachers.

Children wrote on slates with chalk. They wiped the slate clean, by spitting on it and rubbing with their coat sleeve or their finger! Slates could be used over and over. For writing on paper, children used a pen with a metal nib, dipped into an ink well.

·         How were children punished?

Discipline in schools was often strict. Children were beaten for even minor wrongdoings, with a cane, on the hand or bottom. A teacher could also punish a child by making them stand in the corner wearing a ‘dunce’s cap’. Another, very boring, punishment was writing ‘lines’. This meant writing out the same sentence (such as ‘Schooldays are the happiest days of my life’ 100 times or more.

·         Toys in poor homes

Most Victorian toys were made of wood, paper or metal. There were no plastic toys. Poor children usually played with home-made toys. A clothes peg might be turned into a doll, and a lump of wood become a toy boat. A piece of rope could be used for skipping, and rags stuffed with sawdust might become a ball or an animal to cuddle. As a treat, families sometimes bought cheap factory-made toys from a ‘penny stall’ in the market.

 

How is your life different to a Victorian child’s?

 

35 thoughts on “What was life like for a Victorian child?

  1. My life is very different from the victorian children. Victorian children use to start work when they were five years old. This is because they want to help their family so they had to work in factories. Nowadays by law children have start school when they are three years old and not allowed to work anywhere. I use a pen or pencil and write onto paper, they used chalk to write on slates. Today teachers are not allowed to hit students, but in victorian days teachers were allowed to hit children if they do something wrong. My toys are very different to victorian children. I have lots of toys made out of plastic and have computer games. They had to make their own toys from things they use to find in there house.

  2. Victoryan kids work in a factory and we don’t.
    Victorian doesn’t matter if you go to school and it matters if you don’t go to school. In the victorian days children is poor and they ignore them but we don’t do that now.

  3. how burning it was then?
    In the olduntimes was hard for children wen a boy was working in a factory he lost 2 figures and a little girl wanted walk and

  4. Victorian children get hit with a thick stick but we go in the behaviour book 📖.
    We go to our school but Victorian children go work.

    By Aisha and Hasti

  5. We are different because we don’t work at the age started at five.
    We don’t get hit by a cane for a punishment in school but they did.
    They wrote on slates with chalk but we don’t.
    They made home-made toys made out of wood paper and metal.

  6. 1 So they could be rich.
    2 They start working when they are 5 years old.
    3 There are maps and pictures on the wall.
    4 Most Victorian toys is made from wood.

  7. Why did children go to work?
    Many Victorian children were poor and worked to help their families. Few people thought this strange and cruel.

    When did children start work?
    Many children stared work at the age of 5, the same age as children star art school today.

    What was a Victorian classroom like?
    There were maps and perhaps pictures on the wall.

    How were children punished?
    Discipline in schools was oftenstrict.

    Toys in poor homes
    Most Victorian toys W were made of wood,paper or metal

  8. Victorian kids work for there families.
    Many kids started to work at the age of 5.
    In the Victorian class they have a stick.
    Discipline in schools was often strick

  9. Many Victorian people were poor and worked to help there Family. Few people thought this strange or cruel . Families got know money unless they worked and most people thought that work was good for children. The created factory’s new jobs.

  10. How boring was it then?
    What do you learn about in the Victorian times?
    How was it like in the Victorian times? In my life I don’t go to work and it is colourful. In are life we have wifi

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