Adventures with HistoryPin

Last week I helped to organise a Bristol-wide Gifted & Talent event for Year 9s. I was asked to do something “with computers” on the focus of “the development of technology in warfare always has a negative impact”. As I am on a local-history kick at the moment I decided to focus on the Bristol Blitz, a much less known part of World War Two history. I decided this as I fancied getting the kids to have a go at www.historypin.com a website that I had wanted to use for a while and thought the idea of the kids doing ‘real history’ in the field with Blitz photos would be neat.

The kids were given 20 minutes with one photo (courtesy of Bristol Record Office) and sent out into the streets to find the present day location, to analyse change and continuity that would ultimately be turned into a “story” on the website to accompany their photos. Once back on the laptops, the kids uploaded the Blitz photos, ‘pinned’ them to a Google map and street view and wrote their stories.

They seemed to love it and their results are now available for the world to see. It was ridiculously easy to use and would be great with either primary or secondary kids as a bit of an investigation into their local area. Check out stuff their work at www.historypin.com and search for Park Street, Bristol or see the example HistoryPin tweeted as their “PIN OF THE DAY” at http://tinyurl.com/4d34686

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