Children delve into school's past
Children have been uncovering nearly 200 years of history at Ackworth Howard school.
Pupils delved into the past to discover how it was formed in 1833 and explored its transformation over the past 18 decades.
They held a heritage week of activities, before marking the birth date of founder Rachel Howard with a celebratory assembly last Friday.
Head teacher Michael Walker said: “The school has such a rich history and I felt the children should be aware of how it came to be and how it has changed over the years. The children enjoyed learning all about the school and were fascinated by its heritage.”
In the 1800s, Miss Howard, who came from a wealthy family, decided she wanted to support and educate the local community.
She first began teaching children reading, writing and arithmetic from her home, known locally as The Villa.
But before long, she built a junior school to accommodate the youngsters - at a cost of £450. Miss Howard died in 1837, just four years after the school was founded, at the age of 33.
But the school remained in the family - and Miss Howard’s brother John Howard built the first infant classroom, now home to Little Acorns playgroup, in 1873.
Miss Howard’s father Luke was well known as a meteorologist, and was responsible for naming different categories of clouds.
He was initially a Quaker, but converted to the Plymouth Brethren. And he formed a burial ground for the village poor in the school grounds, which still remains today.
The school was later taken over by the Church of England in the 1890s.
Mr Walker said: “I think it’s really important that this history is celebrated. It was something not many of the children were aware of, but they had a great time finding out about how it has changed.”
Children were invited to attend lessons on Friday dressed in uniforms from different periods in the school’s history. The heritage week had also seen them learn playground games from years gone by, explore the graveyard, create cloud collages, look at the corporal punishment register and see images of the school during different eras.