Friday, March 18, 2011

Poor People

I covered a year 4 class today and got to teach some English history.

I showed them an inventory from the house of Edward Jaxson, a wealthy gentleman who lived in Warwickshire and died in 1571. In Edward Jaxson's house were such highfalutin items as silver teaspoons and goblets, feather beds and pillows, preserved beef and bacon, etc, etc.

I asked the class to write down what they imagined a poor person who lived during the same period might have in their house. The following is a list of my favourite excerpts:

a bucket for a cup;
mud for a door;
grass for a pillow;
a bed made of cardboard;
a rooster;
plastic windows;
ragged t-shirt and jeans;
one sandal only;
no pens, only pencils;
only herbs to eat;
expired food.

This person isn't poor ... they're something, but it's not poor.


gerrod said...

If they had pencils in 1571 they were clearly a visionary. Probably explains the missing sandal, too.

Sweet Olive Press | Helen said...


Plastic windows.

And cardboard.