Here at The Manchester Museum, we often get schools and colleges from quite far away coming to see our collections and take part in the workshops and activities we run, and when we had a teacher, Joe Close, from Bemrose School in Derby ringing up and enquiring about workshops for her students, with the students finding us on google and wanting to visit, we were delighted to accommodate their request.
So, on Tuesday 15th December, a mixture of 37 Biology and Religious Studies students arrived at 10:30am to the museum, having left the school at 8am! The students from the different courses had different agendas for the visit. The religious studies students had to research for an essay comparing Evolution and Creationism, whereas the biology students were gathering information about Charles Darwin and his work for an upcoming exam in January.
The students spent 45 minutes in the Charles Darwin: Evolution of the Scientist exhibition working in small teams to complete our Darwin self-guide worksheet before taking part in our Clippy Island: An investigation into Natural Selection activity. In Clippy Island, the students become a population of birds called ‘Springbeaks’ and take part in four seasons of breeding that allows the students to experience first hand how adaptations created by natural variations within a species can enable a population to change over time.
The students (and teachers) from Bemrose College seemed to enjoy their visit to The Manchester Museum. Feedback from the teachers included:
‘Excellent session, very creative and interactive’
‘The activity was kinaesthetic which was extremely engaging and effectively demonstrated natural selection’
The student’s feedback included the following comments
‘The Darwin exhibition was enchanting. I found it profound to observe Darwin’s work’
‘The activity got my brain thinking about evolution and was also enjoyable’
‘I enjoyed the museum and found some useful information about Darwin that will be useful for my revision’
Joe Close, and the students had planned that after leaving the museum at lunchtime so that they could spend the rest of the day in Manchester City Centre Christmas shopping, including a trip to Primark – as you can imagine, they were all excited about! We hope that the students from Bemrose College enjoyed their experience of Manchester (and the museum) and we hope to see them back here in the future.