Nurses In The Past: Florence Nightingale V Mary Seacole

Explore how Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole helped the soldiers of The Crimean War, through artefact handling, costume and role-play.

Choose Florence Nightingale or Mary Seacole as the main focus. Pupils will listen to the story of that person then meet the second nurse in order to discover that both women used very different nursing methods to help the sick and wounded.

Florence Nightingale main focus

Pupils will learn about how Florence Nightingale looked after the soldiers in Scutari Hospital. Pupils will be immersed in role-play, meeting Florence, a wounded soldier and a very grumpy doctor along the way.  

Mary Seacole main focus

Pupils will be immersed in role-play. They will meet different characters and learn about how Mary Seacole came to look after the sick and wounded during The Crimean War. Pupils will discover how she used natural remedies. They will learn about the prejudices that Mary faced throughout her life.

Pupils will take part in two group activities activities:

  • Cleaning Scutari hospital, washing clothing and caring for the wounded soldiers
  • Looking inside Mary Seacole’s medicine box and helping to prepare a mustard plaster


The workshop will focus on

  • How uniforms differed to modern uniforms
  • How Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole helped to care for soldiers wounded in The Crimean War
  • The differences between the lives of Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole
  • How Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole used very different nursing methods to help the sick and wounded soldiers


 “My Y1 class took part in the Florence and Mary workshop. The children learnt so much and were thoroughly engaged. A great mix of whole class and group activities, using artefacts the children would never have seen. This is the third workshop I have booked and I will be booking again. What a wonderful way to start a topic.”

Laura Horton  St Alban’s RC Primary School  Warrington


“Del made the booking process easy and detailed information about the forthcoming workshop was provided. It’s been great to have Del visit the school again. The informative workshop was well structured with regular practical acitivities. The children enjoyed all the activities (apart from scrubbing the floor – ha!) “

Lucy Ramsdale  Merchant Taylor’s School  Crosby