Free learning resources from arts, cultural and heritage organisations.

Teachers' Notes

 Resource created by York Museums Trust | Castle Museum

This resource explores old and new toys, how toys move, and the materials from which they are made


Curriculum Links

  • KS1 Design & Technology: Explore and use mechanisms
  • KS1 History: Changes within living memory 'How are our toys different from those in the past?'
  • KS1 Science: Distinguishing between objects and materials


Learning Objectives

  • Knowledge of old and new toys and the materials they are made of
  • Understanding of the differences between modern toys and toys from the past
  • Skills to investigate how simple mechanisms work


Discussion Ideas

  • What sort of materials are old toys made from?
  • What are new toys made of?
  • What do you think works well about the old toys?
  • How would you change them?
  • What sort of things can newer toys do that old toys can't?
  • What makes a toy fun to play with?
  • What can old toys tell us about children's lives in the past?

Activity Ideas

  • D&T - Make a modern design for an old toy:
    Pupils could take one of the toys pictured in this resource and create a design showing how they would change it to make it appeal to children today. They might consider: 
    - How could you make it more fun?
    - What sort of features could you add?
    Pupils could then present their design to the class and explain why they have made design choices.