Boris Johnson yesterday announced how he wants to turn London into a 'giant classroom', with students across the capital learning from the rich culture and history on their doorstep.

The London mayor outlined details of his new 'London Curriculum', which will use the city's past and present achievements to help bring lessons to life for students.

Pupils will be encouraged to learn about contemporary and historic figures and events across London to aid their education.

Mr Johnson wants them to visit more museums, galleries and key landmarks in the city to help develop their passion for learning.

"The London Curriculum will have an impact on core academic subjects, by turning the capital into a giant classroom and strengthening young Londoners' knowledge of the people, places and events that have not only shaped our city, but also had an impact on the world stage," he said.

The London Curriculum, which is designed to complement the national curriculum, has been split into 15 units, covering subjects including art, music, geography and history.

In recognition of its launch, we've put together five lessons Hounslow can teach the rest of London.

MUSIC

Mr Johnson's London Curriculum promises to celebrate the capital's musical output, 'from classical to grime'.

Freddie Mercury
 

Hounslow's proud musical heritage is in vast disproportion to its size, with the borough having fostered talents from Freddie Mercury and Phil Collins to M.I.A. and Jay Sean.

Freddie Mercury, the late lead singer of Queen, lived from 1964-68 in Feltham, where a memorial stone commemorates his links with the area.

A memorial stone to Freddie Mercury in Feltham High Street
 

Phil Collins, former lead singer of Genesis, reportedly grew up in a semi-detached house in Feltham, while Elvis Costello attended St Mark's Catholic School, in Hounslow.

More recently, R&B star Jay Sean, who grew up in Heston, abandoned his career as a doctor to become the first UK urban act to top Billboard's Hot 100 chart, with Down in 2009.

M.I.A. (real name Mathangi Arulpragasam), who was born in Hounslow, enjoyed huge success with her single Paper Planes, before earning notoriety of a different sort by appearing to flick her middle finger during the 2012 Super Bowl half-time show.

The borough's roll call of musical talents also encompasses Deep Purple singer Ian Gillan, Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page, Pete Townshend, of The Who, Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Nick Lowe, among others.

Brentford is also home to the Musical Museum, which contains one of the world's finest collection of self-playing instruments.

ART

The London mayor says his curriculum will highlight the capital's great artists and their muses, from the Thames and other landmarks to famous contemporaries.

Hounslow's palette of famous artists includes JMW Turner, who lived for a time in Brentford, near the Thames, as a child; Vincent Van Gogh, who taught in Isleworth as a young man; and French impressionist Lucien Pissarro, who lived in Stamford Brook, Chiswick.

A self portrait by William Hogarth
 

However, its strongest links are undoubtedly with the satirical painter and print-maker William Hogarth, most famous for A Rake's Progress. Hogarth's House, his country home in Chiswick, is now a popular museum beside the A4.

Hogarth's House, in Chiswick
 

ENGLISH

The London Curriculum will look at how literary legends like Joesph Conrad and Charles Dickens were influenced by the Thames, as well as the city's darker side.

EM Forster, who is most famous for writing Howard's End, spent much of his later life at his London base in Arlington Park Mansions, Chiswick,

Charles Dickens never lived in the borough, but is rumoured to have been a regular at Isleworth's London Apprentice pub, perched on the bank of the Thames, and is also believed to have visited the Brentford pumping station (now Kew Bridge Steam Museum).

The London Apprentice pub, in Isleworth (photo by Colin Smith)
 

Hounslow Heath, a well-known haunt of highwaymen, is mentioned in Dickens' Pickwick Papers, and the Coach & Horses pub, in London Road, Isleworth, featured in Oliver Twist. Landmarks from the borough also make brief appearances in Martin Chuzzlewit and Hard Times.

HISTORY

From the Roman conquest to the modern day, via the Second World War, the new curriculum promises to explore London's key role in shaping history

Brentford is believed to have been the site of a battle between Julius Caesar's troops and the local king Cassivellaunus in 54BC. It was also the scene of a key battle in the early stages of the English Civil War, in which the Royalists overcame Parliamentary forces in 1642.

A stone pillar outside Brentford County Court, which celebrates the area's history
 

Hounslow is home to several historic buildings, including Syon, Chiswick and Osterley houses.

During the Second World War, factories along Brentford's Great West Road produced the aircraft parts which helped the Allies secure aerial dominance in the Battle of Britain. The importance of this work led to the area coming under heavy bombardment during the Blitz, in which many Londoners were killed.

GEOGRAPHY

The importance of managing green spaces is a key theme in the new curriculum, and there's no shortage of them in Hounslow

Nature reserves in Hounslow range from the vast stretches of Hounslow Heath, which is home to a host of rare insects, to the comparatively modest Isleworth Ait, where endangered species include a beetle and two molluscs.

Hounslow Heath, which is home to rare spiders, bees, wasps and beetles
 

Bedfont Lakes Country Park and Kempton Park are among the borough's other key havens for flora and fauna, while the London Wildlife Trust announced plans earlier this year to open up Crane Meadows, in Cranford, to the public as a nature reserve.

* The London Curriculum was announced during the finals of the University Challenge-style London Knowledge Quiz. Schools keen to take part in the competition next year can learn more at http://london.cityknowledgequiz.co.ukwilliam