The Royal Hospital Chelsea works with schools to offer age appropriate workshops to young learners. To see our current workshops, please use the menus below and click on the course title for further details.
Early Years & Key stage 1 - 2
Christopher Wren became one of the most famous architects ever, but what makes his buildings so special? A short tour of the site will give pupils a brief history of Royal Hospital Chelsea and also allows them to put geometric shapes into the context of building.
- Tour of the site to look for shapes and learn about the history of RHC
- An overview of who Christopher Wren is and which buildings made him famous
- Paint printing with shapes to recreate the Royal Hospital Chelsea
- Start to gain an understanding of the geometric shapes that make up the world around us
- Learn who the Chelsea Pensioners and Christopher Wren are (links to great fire of London)
- Use basic geometric shapes to recreate a picture of Royal Hospital Chelsea
Storytelling With Puppets
English, Drama, PSHE
Forest Schools Sessions
Join Forest Schools teacher Isabelle Trews to explore the Ranelagh Gardens. Sessions will allow children to connect with natures as we look at outdoor art, den building, ecology and much more.
Science, Art, PSHE
PROGRAMME AVAILABLE FROM NOVEMBER 2018
English, history, PSHE
Pupils get the opportunity to learn about the Royal Hospital Chelsea and the people who reside here through interpretation of their uniform. The workshop facilitator will guide pupils through an overview of military dress and what it is used for, before allowing the children to investigate real pensioners and their pasts.
Students will use their skills in historical investigation to work out what uniform a pensioner would be wearing in different circumstances and will even have the opportunity to dress as a pensioner.
- Welcome to the hospital and information on the history and purpose of Royal Hospital Chelsea
- Military dress over the years and open questions about why it has changed and why we have different uniforms
- Use of sources to correctly dress a soldier and videos to tell stories and give correct information
- Emotion boards to gain an understanding of some of the emotions of being an army veteran
- Chance to try on pensioner uniform
- Pupils will use comprehension skills to pick out facts from a piece of written prose and apply them to a series of tasks.
- Historical investigative skills will allow pupils to gain an understanding of uniforms and what the parts of them mean
- Children will develop an understanding of the emotions of being a soldier and with that the relevance of the Royal Hospital Chelsea in supporting veterans
Key Stage 2 - 3
Blitzkrieg - Local history of London
Children use real sources and replicas of artefacts to conduct their own historical investigations into the use of the Royal Hospital Chelsea during the blitz, connecting them to events on an emotional level and realising the extent of damage caused by the blitz. The workshop explores the roles that people at the hospital took on and the loss to property and life as 37 bombs landed on site.
- Brief history of the Royal Hospital Chelsea
- Description of the blitz- Pupils will use artefacts, photographs and investigative skills to gain perspective of what happened during WWII
- Learning through collections- Artefact handling will allow pupils to gain an understanding of what equipment was used during the blitz and make the connection to people of London
- To develop an understanding of local history through historical enquiry of sources and artefacts.
- Gain an emotional connection to the past through the description of events using onomatopoeia and adjectives.
- Understand what the Royal Hospital Chelsea is, what it stands for and its relevance within society.
Billy the Kid - Walking Tour
Explore the text of Michael Morpurgoe’s Billy the Kid, through allegorical stories of the Chelsea Pensioners. A tour of the grounds will allow children to find out what life would have been like for Billy as he became a pensioner and linking some of the themes of the book to events that occurred at Royal Hospital Chelsea
Look out for special screenings, resources and events at Royal Hospital Chelsea
English, History, Science, Drama, PSHE
- A demonstration of how a V2 rocket would have flown and pictures of the damage they caused
- Comparing the capture of Billy in Tobruk to one of our Pensioners
- Exploring the feelings and emotions of becoming a Chelsea pensioner as we see where they live and what they get up to from day to day
- Explore some of the themes of the book ‘Billy the Kid’
- Look at the impact of the blitz and in particular the terrifying V2 rocket
- Draw parallels between Billy and the lives of the pensioners today
Costumed performer - Christopher Wren
Spectrum drama will allow pupils to travel in time to meet Christopher Wren, listen to stories of an illustrious career, drawing links to the Great Fire of London, the foundation of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, Palladian architecture and how structures will have been created using simple machines
Science, Maths, Drama
- Our costumed performer will meet the group in character and provide an overview of Christopher Wren’s life and works
- Children then carry out a marketplace of activities:-
- Using Kinex to create simple machines (levers and pulleys)
- An examination of the shapes that make up Palladian architecture and construction of a model
- Explore the life of a national icon
- Learn about local history and the context in which the Royal Hospital Chelsea was built
- Use simple machines to explain simple physics concepts
Key stage 3 - 4
Signals and Cyphers
Secret codes have been used for centuries to convey messages to only those who were intended to read them… or that had the wit and skills required to crack-the-code.
Join Royal Hospital Chelsea as we investigate the code-breakers who reside at Royal Hospital Chelsea, the enigma code, naval relay stations built at RHC and the impact on modern computer science
History, Maths, ICT
- A look at the evolution of communication and how systems were driven by both war and advances in technology
- Explore the navy relay station which sent messages down to Portsmouth and examine how this primitive system is linked to the computers we use today
- Examine the story of the Enigma code and how the workers at Bletchley Park helped to save thousands of lives by ending the war earlier than anticipated
- Learn about how communication has evolved and has at times been driven by war
- Understand how messages were relayed
- Code and decipher messages using simple models
Take a look at what it means to be a Chelsea Pensioner; explore the uniforms, the ceremonies, the heritage and the accommodation of our Army Veterans. The tour is perfect for all ages and will give an overview of why the hospital exists, from its foundation, across 3 centauries of history to how our pensioners live today.
NOTE: We can differentiate the tour to suite all ages and levels of prior knowledge.
Subject AreasHistory, PSHE
- The foundation of the hospital
- Where our pensioners live
- Charles II and Founders Day ceremonies
- The Great Hall and Wren Chapel
- Explore the museum
- Gain an understanding of who the Chelsea Pensioners are and why the Royal Hospital Chelsea exists
- Explore local history and the relevance of Royal Hospital Chelsea in today’s society