For the topic ‘Clothes’ we built a time machine in the classroom (4 – 8 year olds) to explore clothes worn in the past in different countries.

This was to introduce the subject area- history. We took a trip back in time to look at the clothes people wore in the past.

The idea was that the children could use this are independently. They could either choose their own era to travel to or use the idea cards. There were history books available and dressing up clothes. Depending on the age, interests and ability of the child, they were able to use the play area to meet their own goals.

As a link to maths there were all kinds of time-measuring devices incorporated into the time machine.

This is the control panel inside the time machine. It incorporates different methods of measuring time (maths lesson) and anything we could find with buttons or knobs on it….. The picture shows the historical period we were going to visit.

There were different cards with examples which we used to get the role-playing going and as a great discussion starter.

The children liked the time machine idea so much that we made individual control panels to end the project. These panels tied together different aspects of the topic and even had them practicing their spelling!

Spelling words- days of the week and months of the year


Maths- telling the time- now and then clocks

Science- seasons


Geography- regions of the world with different climates and habitats

History- the screen is where the historical picture of the clothes goes.

Literature- this is a weird one! We were reading a book called ‘Ronny and the haunted Rolls-Royce by John Antrobus. In this book someone cuts a piece of string and alters time…….

The time machine had lots of educational components. I really liked the way that it tied together all the areas of the topic when we made the control panel.

The children really enjoyed playing in here. For the youngest children it was a fantastic role play area. They enjoyed setting the controls and dressing up in the clothes we provided.

The older children used it as a source of inspiration for their own research projects.

All in all, a fantastic experience for all!