Learning through the Past
This Project had 2 parts:
- Part 1 looked at the lives of people with learning difficulties in Wakefield 120 years ago. We did this by visiting the Wakefield Mental Health Museum and looking at the collection that they have there, which has items to look at. We visited the West Yorkshire Archive and looked at the patients records and chaplains diaries. We also were helped by the books from the local history library, some of which had some brilliant pictures of Wakefield from the late 1800's. Through drama we then thought more about what life was like for people then and how it compared to our life experiences, we brought scenes to life, we played games that helped us to think about issues that our discussions brought up and we created spaces to express our own feelings and thoughts. From what we learned we created drama workshops on themes that we had thought about. We shared our workshops with other people with learning difficulties and support workers and carers from the Wakefield district .
- Part 2 interviewed people with learning difficulties, support workers, parents and carers about their experience of living in Wakefield. We were particularly interested in what it was like to go to school in Wakefield for someone with a learning difficulty. We talked to people of different ages and form different backgrounds. The interviews were made into short films that we hope will be of interest to historians in the future. We have interviewed more than 20 people. To do this we have had to learn a lot of skills. We were taught how to interview someone, how to prepare questions and help people tell their story. We learnt about how to make documentary films, which meant using cameras, using editing software on the laptops, and we learnt that to edit meant making choices. We have become documentary film-makers. There is a link to a catalogue of our work below which will tell you more and enable you to watch and see our work online.