Dear Mr Dickens

When Charles Dickens wrote Oliver Twist, it was hailed as a masterpiece and is still read and loved by people across the world today. However, not everyone has felt that way. Join the Learning Team at the Charles Dickens Museum to find out more about anti-Jewish racism in Dickens’ novel, how one Victorian woman stood up against this and how she changed the way that Dickens wrote.

This onsite session takes students on an interactive tour around Dickens’ house. Your class will find out more about the story of Oliver Twist, investigate the social themes Dickens was keen to raise awareness of and discover how popular the novel was with its contemporary public. Through reading Nancy Churnin’s recently published children’s story Dear Mr Dickens, they will then go on to examine why some people, both then and now, have found the use of negative stereotypes in the novel so problematic.

The onsite session price includes a resource pack for use back in the classroom featuring a reading of the Dear Mr Dickens story by Miriam Margolyes, a lesson which further explores the idea of discrimination in the world today, as well as structured letter writing activities for students to complete themselves. In addition, there is guidance for a class-led assembly, for which costumes are available to borrow.

The author of Dear Mr Dickens, Nancy Churnin, will be running a series of complementary Q&A virtual sessions for participating classes to join through the Museum. Please sign-up when booking onto the workshop.

Current available dates: 

17th June at 2pm



Onsite (including all downloadable materials and a place on an author Q&A).

Up to 10 students, Off-peak £100 (Jan-Oct), Peak £125 (Nov-Dec)

Up to 20 students, Off-peak £150 (Jan-Oct), Peak £185 (Nov-Dec)

Up to 30 students, Off-peak £200 (Jan-Oct), Peak £250 (Nov-Dec)


Curriculum Links:
KS2: Citizenship

  • developing confidence and responsibility and making the most of their abilities
  • preparing to play an active role as citizens
  • developing good relationships and respecting the differences between people

KS2 English

  • Reading - comprehension
  • Writing – composition

KS2: History

  • a study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066 (Victorian Britain)
  • the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements, some should be used to compare aspects of life in different periods
  • events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally 
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