Meet the eight-year-old girl giving history lessons to homeschooled kids during lockdown, earning her the admiration of historians Mary Beard and Dan Snow

·3-min read

Meet the eight-year-old girl giving history lessons to homeschooled kids during lockdown, earning her the admiration of historians Mary Beard and Dan Snow.

Little Arabella Duffy, dresses up as figures from history including Queen Victoria, Cleopatra and Jane Austen.

She acts as a teacher, sharing her knowledge on a range of periods; from Ancient Greece to the Second World War.

Homeschooled by her mum Sophy, 53, throughout her entire education, Arabella's been helping other kids less used to staying at home.

Her lessons have gained her more than 14,000 online followers who tune in for her five minute lessons.

She researches and writes the scripts to each video from books in her living room, before acting it out and posting them on social media for other kids to enjoy.

In one of the impressive videos, Arabella dresses up as a suffragette explaining a brief history of activist Emily Pankhurst.

She also plays a World War Two child evacuee packing before she is evacuated to the countryside, based on her grandmother's memories of the war.

In another she plays Queen Victoria - dressed in her trademark black attire - as she mourns the death of her beloved Prince Albert.

Arabella began making the videos during lockdown last year as a means of coping with anxiety brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Her videos have earned her admiration from mums across the UK and last month saw esteemed historian Mary Beard retweet one of her videos on Twitter.

TV historian Dan Snow has also shown his support to little Arabella as making up one of her 14,100 followers on Instagram.

Proud mum Sophy, from Hampstead, north London said: "It's nothing preachy. She just wants to help share interesting facts she's learnt.

"She's just a regular kid who wants to make a difference.

"A lot of kids are struggling with anxiety because of the lockdown and this just helps.

"With lockdown and the subsequent homeschooling, there's an absence of other kids bouncing off one another.

"I've had mums get in touch from watching her videos on YouTube to tells us their children have really enjoyed watching them and learnt something.

"Plus she's really enjoying it and is so knowledgeable.

"When she gets an idea in her head, that's her off.

"She'll wake up early to research before breakfast and the start of homeschooling.

"She gets the books of the shelves, scribbles down her notes and compiles it all herself.

"She doesn't just lift facts off Google.

"She absolutely loves history so she can get herself totally immersed in it and is just incredibly disciplined when it comes to it.

"When she was three-years-old she started taking an interest in Shakespeare so we took her to Stratford-Upon-Avon to visit his house.

"The security guard there was just so impressed by a little girl being so obsessed with Shakespeare, he let her stand on his grave!

"The only other person to do that was Prince Charles!

"I've bought her dozens of books on him and she loves to recite scenes from Romeo and Juliet for the videos.

"She makes mistakes and laughs them off. I have to sometimes probe her to get her back on track if she makes a mistake.

"She has been asked to take part in Mensa but I want her to be her. I want her to be in her own world, rather than feel the pressure to perform and compete.

"This lockdown she wanted to help the primary school community with fun lessons."

Arabella said: "History is an adventure and you never know where it's going to take you next.

"History for me is like visiting the mysteries of the past.

"It just clicks with me. It was like a switch that went on and has never switched off.

"I enjoy doing them with my mum as it gives me a focus and something to do in the mornings.

"I just love learning. Sometimes I even get to teach my mum new things she doesn't know."

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