Key Stage 1

Reception to Year 2

Our engaging Gallery-based sessions are designed to raise pupils’ curiosity and build their confidence in looking at and responding to portraiture.

90 minutes – unless otherwise stated
One class, maximum 30 pupils
All materials are provided

FREE  (unless otherwise stated) Cancellation and no-show charges  apply. See terms and conditions 

What is a portrait?

What is a portrait? Why do we make them? Why do we display them? Pupils consider these questions on their first visit to the National Portrait Gallery. Through discussion, role play and drawing this interactive session encourages pupils to consider portraiture and the Collection making connections between the portraits and their own life experiences.



The Capel Family, by Cornelius Johnson (Jonson or Jonson van Ceulen), circa 1640 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

The Capel Family
by Cornelius Johnson (Jonson or Jonson van Ceulen)
circa 1640
NPG 4759

Children and Families

Pupils explore the lives of children from the past by learning to read two historic family portraits. Through discussion, role play, and drawing this interactive session encourages pupils to think, imagine and make connections between the portraits and their own life experiences.












Mary Jane Seacole (née Grant), by Albert Charles Challen, 1869 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Mary Jane Seacole (née Grant)
by Albert Charles Challen
1869
NPG 6856

Famous People: Storytelling

Pupils discover stories about the lives of significant individuals from the past. Through questioning, observation and drawing pupils explore how the lives and achievements of the sitter have been portrayed in the portraits and consider the role their display in the Gallery plays in informing our understanding of the sitter. 

Samuel Pepys and Charles II
Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole