School Visits - What We Offer
We offer four standard options to Key Stage 2 groups. The pattern for each visit is a 30 minute power point presentation followed by a one hour tour.
Option 1: Cathedral Life
This option includes a Power Point introduction to the Cathedral, followed by a guided tour. The power point presentation covers a typical day in the life of the Cathedral, and includes music by the choir, and a look behind the scenes of a working cathedral.
The tour includes a look at stained glass, features of the building, the bishop's throne (including dressing up as a bishop!), and the story of St. Frideswide (patron saint of Oxford).
This option is particularly good for groups studying Places of Worship.
Option 2: Medieval Pilgrimage
For this option, you will be sent a short story about a visit to the shrine of St Frideswide in the Middle Ages to read in class before your visit. On the day, there will be an introductory presentation about the monastery and medieval pilgrimage. Then everybody dresses up as medieval pilgrims (costumes provided) and make a pilgrimage to the shrine. There will then be a tour of the remaining medieval parts of the Cathedral.
Option 3: Henry VIII and the Reformation
This visit is aimed at the upper end of Key Stage 2. It takes a look at Henry VIII's time at Christ Church and the events that led to him to create the Church of England. The children will then learn about the differences between the Protestant and Catholic Churches in the reformation and have a chance to look at the facsimiles of the 16th century Bibles from the College Library. We will also be listening to the different types of music used in different churches. Finally, there will be a tour of the Cathedral looking at the 'signs of the reformation' that can still be seen today.
Option 4: Alice
This option takes you behind the scenes of the children's classic book, 'Alice in Wonderland' which was written here at Christ Church, inspired by Alice Liddell, the Dean's daughter. Your visit will start with a presentation that shows how the book came to be written. This will be followed by a tour of the places and objects at Christ Church that inspired the story.
A room will be available for the children to eat their packed lunches or have a break. Coats and bags can also be left in this room.
The visits tie into the History National Curriculum and the Oxford LEA RE Syllabus for Key Stage 2 by covering the following:
- Prayer and worship (option 1)
- Religion in the community (option 1)
- Pilgrimage (option 2)
- Places of worship (options 1 & 2)
- Expressing belief through the arts (option 1)
- The life of St. Frideswide c. 680-735 (options 1 & 2)
- History Study – life in a medieval monastery (option 2)
- Britain in Tudor Times (option 3)
For a full list of the topics covered, please see our brochure which is available to download.
We supply follow up packs for teachers with suggestions for related classroom activities for each of our visits.
Feedback from Teachers and Pupils
'We enjoyed the story with direct links to the stained glass window, architectural features, clear introduction of the power point which set the scene, interesting snippets of information and welcoming, friendly, well-informed staff' (Year 6 Teacher, John Blandy Cof E School)
'My favourite part was acting out and pretending we were real pilgrims. I was quite amazed that any of the time I was on the trip I could have been standing on St. Frideswide's bones.' (Emma, Year 6)
'The tour guide makes or breaks the visit. The children responded well to the guides and were engaged from the powerpoint slides through to the actual tour of the buildings. As a Church of England school it was particularly poignant to meet one of the church attendants and share in a short act of collective worship.' (Teacher accompanying a year 5 class, Hawridge and Cholesbury School)
Practical Information for Schools
How to Book:
Please apply to visit at least three weeks in advance. To book, contact Jim Godfrey, Cathedral Education Officer, on 01865 276154 or 01865 286003, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are offering two sessions, morning (10-12) and afternoon (12:30-2:30). Only one class per session. Cost: £2 (+VAT) per child to include Power Point presentation, tour and a teacher’s follow-up pack.
There is unfortunately no parking available at Christ Church, but it is possible to drop-off pupils outside the College. The nearest place for coaches to park is Oxpens Coachpark.
A letter or email with further practical information will be sent to you once you have booked your visit. If you would like to make a pre-visit to the Cathedral, please arrange this when you book.