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Indoor activity for kids

At the moment when we all #StayHome to stay healthy, we bring the museum to you! Looking for a kids’ indoor activity? Check out our #HistoryHoarding series of short educational games – where we bring the museum to you! 

Join us as we travel through time to different moments in European history via our exhibition. We have many objects on display from across the continent and beyond.

ACTIVITY 1

At different moments in history, people fought for their rights to live in democracies, to elect their leaders and to improve their lives. In 1848, for example, a wave of political upheavals and revolutions swept across Europe, carried by national, liberal and democratic movements of the time.

We’ve posted four objects related to that time that are on display in our museum – now follow the steps – and get all the people under your roof to join in!

1. Choose your favourite object from the four.

2. Pick a character in one of the objects.

3. Use props in your house to bring your character to life!

4. Practice how your character poses itself. Think of something your character is saying or singing to really embody your character.

5. Recreate the statue. Get other people in your household to join in!

6. Take a picture and post it on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, either in reply to our original post, or as a standalone post, with the hashtag #HistoryHoarding (and tag us too!)

Later today we will share some facts about these objects for you History Hoarders!

Fun facts about William Tell

For the #historyhoarders – we zoom in on the Swiss Plate about the Rütlischwur. Below find some extra facts about William Tell.

  • There's no evidence that Tell ever existed or that anyone in Uri shot an arrow off a child's head. More likely, the tale is a combination of real and imagined events. In a legend some facts are dramatically transformed to make the story more interesting.
  • What do you think if you would search for a (cross)bow and apple online? Exactly you would find many different stories that use the same elements as this story. The apple-shot is used in a number of legends in other countries too.
  • There is a statue of Willem Tell in Uri, a mountain village that is the birthplace of modern Switzerland. Uri was one of the three original cantons that swore the oath and formed the confederation in 1291 on the Rütli. The other original cantons were Schwyz and Unterwalden. The three together formed Confederation of Helvetica in 1291. Today we call it Switzerland. You can see them depicted in the picture as the three men in the middle of the plate. 
  • The story of William Tell is also used in series and films. See here a fragment from a movie in 1959 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jr9vgq18k7Y
  • Did you know William Tell even has a song just written for him. In the 1800's a man named Giochino Rossini composed an opera (which is a play with music and singing) about William Tell. You can listen to it here - William Tell Overture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7O91GDWGPU
  • And someone made a funny song out of it. I think your parents may appreciate it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDMhpapZcoU&t=59s
  • Did you know William Tell even has ‘his’ own museum in Switzerland? Check it out here https://www.tellmuseum.ch/language/en/

To learn more about the this period of revolutions with your young students, check out this overview by the “School History” team, which can be broken down into bitesize chunks:  

https://schoolhistory.co.uk/notes/the-revolutions-of-1848/

Object credits and copyrights:

1. “Erection of Barricades”, German Confederation, ca. 1850, House of European History

2. Rütlischwur, Legendary oath of the Swiss Confederacy, Schweizerisches Nationalmuseum / Musée national suisse / Museo nazionale svizzero, Zurich, Switzerland

3. Flask with portrait of Garibaldi (1807–1882)

Museo Storico Italian della Guerra onlus, Rovereto (Italy)

4. Revolutionaries Group of 1848 - Justin Nástase, National History Museum of Romania

GALLERY