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History Enquiry


Why was Florence called 'The Lady With the Lamp'?


I hope you enjoy 'thinking like a historian' as you go through this webpage.


Historians find out about people from the past and events that happened in the past.


We can learn a lot from looking at what's already happened and people who have made important changes. 


Knowing about events in history can help us to learn how to make our lives better today. 


I hope you enjoy it :) Miss Locke

Here is a picture of a lady called Florence.


We still remember her today.


Have a think....Why do YOU think she is important?


(Year 2 - you have a head start with this as you have learnt about her already!)

Clue 1

Just from looking at this picture, how do you know that she is someone from the past?


Top Tip - think about her clothes and the style of the picture (was it taken in colour?). 

If you can, write down some of your ideas in your home learning book, or draw some pictures and label them. 


Don't forget to use the phonics mat and tricky word wall to help you to spell your words (found here:)



With just one clue, it's hard isn't it! I'm sure you've all come up with lots of different ideas, which is great!


Here's another clue for you: She was born 200 YEARS ago on 12th May 1820.


So she is definitely someone from the past!


Here is another clue about why this lady is so important..... What do you think now?

Clue 2

What is this place? Have you or a family member ever had to go there?


Yes, it's a hospital. When we clap for people who work for the NHS every Thursday evening, we are clapping for people who work in places like this. A safe, clean place for poorly people to get better and to be cared for by people who are trained to know what to do.


BUT....It hasn't always been this way.


So now, why do you think Florence is a significant person in history?


STOP! Use a dictionary to look up the meaning of the word 'significant'. Write down it's meaning in your home learning book.

Clue 3

Clue 4

Here is what a hospital would have probably looked like when Florence was a nurse in the 1800s.


Florence Nightingale was shocked when she started working as a nurse in hospitals.


She was shocked because they were unclean and people were not washing their hands.


She wanted to teach people about how germs can easily spread diseases if people do not wash their hands and if hospitals do not get cleaned.


Draw a line down the middle of your page. Write two titles either side of the line:


Similarities     |     Differences


When you look at the picture of the hospital today and in the past, what is similar?


When you look at the picture of the hospital today and in the past, what is different?



It's video time now!


Watch this video from BBC Bitesize to learn about:

- what hospitals used to be like

- what Florence Nightingale did to make hospitals better


If you want to, write down some facts you've learnt in your home learning book.



In the video, Florence Nightingale was called ' The Lady with the Lamp'.


Now that you've learnt more about her, in your home learning book, write down this question:


Why was Florence Nightingale called the Lady with the Lamp?


(Don't forget the question mark and capital letters for her name!)


Underneath write down your answer. 


Florence Nightingale was called the Lady with the Lamp because......

Here is a map. 

Can you remember what this map is showing us?

Yes! It's a map of the world. Remember, the world is round but we often draw it flat like this so we can see it all.


Can you see where the oceans are?


Can you see where the continents are?


In your home learning book can you use the map to help you finish these sentences...


The names of the oceans are....


The names of the continents are...


(If you are writing a list, don't forget commas - year 2!)

Here is a map that shows the continent, Europe, close up.


Europe is made up of lots of different countries.

Can you find Italy? 

This is where Florence was born.


Can you find Germany?

This is where Florence went to train to be a nurse.


Can you find Turkey?

This is where Florence went to work in hospitals to help poorly soldiers.


Can you find London (England, UK)?

This is where Florence lived and eventually opened her Nursing School, to teach other people how to be nurses.

Now it's time to draw a time line. This is where events are put in the right order.


Let's have a go at drawing a timeline.


Oh dear! My day is all muddled up! I don't eat dinner at the beginning of the day.... and I get dressed before I play in the garden! Can you help me put these in the right order on a time line starting with what happens first?


Eat dinner

Get up

Play in the garden

Eat breakfast

Get dressed

Brush teeth

Go for a walk





Now let's draw a time line on a poster showing events that happened in Florence Nightingale's life.


Here are 9 important events in her life but... Oh no! They are muddled up and in the wrong order! Can you draw another timeline and put these events in the right order, starting with what happened first?


1907 - Florence Nightingale is the first woman to be awarded the Order of Merit.


12th May 1820- Florence Nightingale is born.


1860 - The Nightingale School of Nursing opens.


1853 - Florence Nightingale runs a hospital in London.


1851 - She goes to Germany to train to be a nurse.


1854 - She goes to Turkey to look after soldiers of Crimean War in hospital.


1910 - Florence Nightingale is an old lady and dies aged 90.


1883- Queen Victoria awards Florence the Royal Red Cross.


1859 - Florence writes her book called 'Notes on Nursing'.


WELL DONE if you've managed to put these in the right order. Did you start with Florence being born in 1820?


Did you know....?


The posh word for putting things in order on a timeline is putting them in 'CHRONOLOGICAL' order. You have been thinking like a HISTORIAN! 


Historians are people who look at events and people from the past and how they have helped our lives today. Historians also look at which events might have been the most important. There is no right answer to this as people have different opinions.


So what do YOU think was the most important thing that Florence Nightingale did that has helped people in our hospitals today?


Write your thoughts in your home learning book.