Most of these questions can be used by students with no prior knowledge of Freud's theories. They are designed to promote discussion in the museum or classroom and are not specifically related to the virtual exhibition, or the Interpretation of Dreams Exhibition on show in the museum.
If you make your own worksheets based on either exhibition please send a copy to the museum, so your ideas can be shared.
There are teachers notes linked to this page.
- Freud's most famous book was called The Interpretation of Dreams.
What other people have tried to interpret dreams?
- There are many pictures and photographs in the house of Freud himself.
Which one do you think was his favourite?
Where did you find the picture on the right?
- There are many pictures in the museum of places which were important to Freud.
In one of these places Freud wrote to his friend that he had 'discovered the secret of dreams'.
Draw a picture of where you think it was.
Why do you think it was this place in particular that inspired Freud to work out his dream theory?
- Look at the cartoon of the 'French Nurse's Dream' which Freud reproduces in The Interpretation of Dreams.
How do you know it is a dream?
- Look at the 'French Nurse's Dream' again.
Describe what is happening in the dream.
How do you think the events of the dream relate to the daily life of the dreamer?
What is the meaning or symbolism of the dream-element 'water' in the dream?
- Look at the 'French Nurse's Dream' again. Imagine that, instead of the nurse, this is a dream dreamed by the little child before waking up.
What does the dream mean now?
- Go into the Anna Freud room upstairs.
What do you think that Anna might have dreamed of when she was a little girl?
Find something in the room to support your answer.
- Look at the chair behind Freud's desk.
What do you think it represents?
- Imagine you had a dream about the object on the right.
What do you think it might symbolise?
- Look at Freud's souvenir picture of the Austrian Alpine region which is hanging in the dining room.
What symbols can you find in the picture?
Describe an advertisement which uses a landscape as a metaphor of the human body. If you cannot remember one, make one up
- Freud said that a dream represents or expresses a wish.
What do you think he means by the word 'wish'?
- Look at the picture on the left.
What is the wish expressed in it?
- Freud said that dreams express a forbidden, unconscious wish.
Look at the picture again
What is the forbidden wish expressed in it?
- Suppose you had to spend the night in Freud's house. Make up a dream that you might have during the night.
- Imagine that Freud was working late one night in his study. He falls asleep with his work and has a dream.
What is Freud's dream?
- Think of the name of your favourite song or film.
Now write down the name in picture language.
Each group has to try to decipher the other's script.
- Freud says that dreams represent the 'fulfilment of a wish'
Imagine that Freud's study is a dream.
What is the 'wish' you can find expressed in it?