Inside and Outside the Classroom
A Heritage Learning Initiative
Transcribe Bentham is a heritage learning initiative which exposes learners to original historical manuscripts while promoting core skills. It encourages the use of archival collections in schools and targets all three learning groups – visual, aural and kinaesthetic – by including instructional and informational videos; visual images; and textual resources. Pupils can actively participate by using the online transcription tool and by communicating with other contributors. Users can create a social profile and engage with the discussion forum. They can keep track of, and gain points for, their own contributions. Users gain points for transcriptions and advance up the progress ladder reaching successive achievement levels as they improve.
Transcribe Bentham introduces learners to digitised collections and embodies the ideals of the National Curriculum in the following ways:
- Sharpens visual awareness
- Promotes literacy, analytical and ICT skills
- Brings history alive
- Encourages learners to make a positive contribution
- Increases knowledge and understanding through contact with artefacts
- Provides an alternative way of working
- Promotes historical enquiry, interpreting evidence, understanding past societies and environments
- Promotes citizenship, reflective learning, self-management and confidence
Scottish Curriculum for Excellence
It promotes the four-pronged agenda of the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence:
- Successful Learners: the project provides an opportunity for non-traditional learning and the development of new practical skills such as transcription and ICT
- Confident Individuals: this project will give learners an opportunity to work independently with archives to explore history. By emphasising the importance of their contribution to the initiative, learners will gain a sense of achievement
- Responsible Citizens: the project will develop learners’ knowledge of the world, its government and its history; it will encourage learners to preserve the past and recognise the value of historical documents
- Effective Contributors: it will stress the value of learners’ individual contributions and their role in preserving and understanding the past
Learning outside the classroom
We can arrange for your class to visit and participate in the Transcribe Bentham project at UCL. During your time here students will be given the opportunity to visit Jeremy Bentham who is preserved in his box in the South Cloisters, and to hear a short lecture from an expert in the field. We can also organise a workshop in a computer lab where students can log-in and contribute to the transcription process. Students will be shown original manuscripts in hard copy form as well as the digitised images. Students from Raine’s Foundation School in Bethnal Green; the Queen’s School, Chester; St Albans High School for Girls and University College School have visited the project in recent months.
Find out more about class trips to the Bentham Project:
- Blog post by Tom Bennett from Raine’s Foundation School
- Blog post about Queen’s School visit
- Article in Chester Chronicle about Queen’s School visit
- Story from the Queen’s School website
Alternatively, representatives from the project are available to visit your school to deliver presentations and introduce pupils to Transcribe Bentham. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out more about heritage learning:
- English Heritage
- Heritage Education Forum
- Museums, Libraries and Archives Council: Strategic Commissioning programme
- Engaging Places: a resource to support teaching and learning through buildings and places
If you are interested in having your school visit the project at UCL or if you would like more information on how you might integrate the project into your syllabus, please contact us at email@example.com.