Christopher Lloyd brings history to life for Socrates pupils at Sydenham High

Christopher Lloyd brings history to life for Socrates pupils at Sydenham High

8 February 2019

On Thursday 7 February pupils on our Socrates Programme were treated to a day of discovery with author and lecturer, Christopher Lloyd. The first session was about developing a lifelong love of learning. Christopher told his own personal story and outlined his theory of learning based on the 5 WOWs which goes into evolutionary biology focusing in particular on the human brain. It focused on the importance of developing an interconnected framework for learning (which is how the brain works), mentioning Socrates in the process! This was followed by a session taking the pupils on a journey through the history of Absolutely Everything! – one of his fantastic books – demonstrating how you can connect the history of nature and humanity into a single sweeping narrative. He used his new book and a series of everyday objects in a multi-coloured coat of many pockets! During lunchtime Christopher signed many books for pupils across the school and then the Socrates workshop continued with the final session where the girls divided into teams to make their own timelines and presented them back to each other in groups. It was an enlightening day and much knowledge was gained, all whilst having fun!

Pupil Voice

On Thursday 7th of February, I had the amazing opportunity to participate in a workshop with Christopher Lloyd (the author of many non-fiction books including ‘Absolutely Everything’) as a part of the Socrates Program: where students from years 7-9 are inspired to create projects about anything that interests them and get to attend lectures hosted by a variety of entrepreneurs, scientists and interesting people.It started off with an interactive fast paced ‘tour’, from the creation of the universe to Brexit; it was often interrupted by Christopher going off on hilarious tangents that he managed to link back to the original points. After speaking to us about his inspiration to write his books and how he created his timelines he challenged us to create our own in small groups. The subject for my group’s timeline was Sub-saharan Africa and we had around an hour to research key events and design our timeline. In addition to the internet, Christopher’s enormous timeline helped us immensely with the creation of our own; It covered quite a lot of key events in the history of the Earth from its creation, to the beginning of civilisation and the evolution of human society. And when I say enormous I truly mean it, it was taller than most of the students (including myself) and it was well over 3 meters long. When we’d completed our timelines we presented them to all of the students which I thought was a great way for us all to share what we’d learned and to exercise our public speaking skills. Unfortunately, we were the last group and shortly after we’d finished so had school and the workshop was over. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the day, the opportunity to meet Christopher and buy his books, two of which I am really enjoying reading, and finally, be reminded that we learn new things all the time and that learning is fun; it’s just the way you learn that counts.- Tiff Igharoro, year 8

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