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An A to Z of Newcastle and Gateshead History

Children from Newcastle and Gateshead have been learning all about the history of the region for a new book. They have been finding out about the stories, places and people that make the North East special.

Year 5 pupils from five primary schools are working with Newcastle University Special Collections, Heritage Schools and Newcastle City Guides to produce an Alphabet book all about Newcastle and Gateshead.

Teachers from each school attended a day of training which included a city wide heritage trail. They got ideas and inspiration from local artists and creative writers which would help them back in the classroom.

Teachers attending the training event at Newcastle University
Gillian Johnston from Newcastle University Special Collections outreach team talking to teachers about the Newcastle and Gateshead Alphabet book project

Newcastle University Special Collections Outreach team shared lots of archive materials with teachers to help them think about using interesting objects back in school. Teachers were fascinated by the old cookery books and the Suffrage banner.

Archive materials from Newcastle University Special Collections
Archive materials from Newcastle University Special Collections

Our partners at Seven Stories also shared their fantastic collection of Alphabet books.

Children from each school have all been on a walk around the place where they live. They have learned about famous people from their town. They have also found out about the history of some of the buildings near their school. Many pupils were surprised to learn that the place where they live was so interesting.

I thought Benwell was boring and no one would want to visit our town, but now I have learned about people like John Buddle and found out about big houses like Benwell Towers, I can see that Benwell is really interesting

Pupil from St John's School, Benwell

From Hadrian's Wall to the hoppings, stotties to St Nicholas Cathedral. The books produced by each school will celebrate our wonderful heritage.

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