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Whose shoes?

Student activities

Task no. 1

Who wore these shoes? When did they wear them?

Do you ever think about your shoes? Shoes can tell a lot about a person.  Shoes can tell us if people play football, tennis or ride horses. The size of your shoe will tell people if you are a baby, a child or an adult.  

Look at the shoes you are wearing now. What activities can you do wearing these shoes? Do you think your shoes should go into a museum for people to look at in the future?

It may sound silly, but shoes can tell us a lot about life in the past! Shoes can tell us that some things change and some things remain the same over time. Shoes also change over time because of changes in fashion, especially for women. 

Look at the pictures of shoes from the past and discuss: 

  • Who wore these shoes?
  • When did they wear them?
  • What activities do you think someone would do wearing these shoes?
  • Would someone still want to wear these shoes today? Why or why not?
  • What can these shoes tell us about how things change over time?


Low quality government boots issued as depression relief, 29/5/1934
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Women's shoes 1935, 1935?
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Bingle family : baby shoes, ca. 1865-1885, ca. 1865-1885
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Modelling of shoes for David Jones, 1953 / photography Max Dupain and Associates , 1953
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A City of Melbourne Conveyancer [Watercolour] , ca. 870
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Slippers, 11/1940
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