Join our award-winning Shabtis in Schools programme

Imagine if your school could host a real ancient Egyptian museum artefact.

What could you do with this unique opportunity?

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…This experience with the shabti is something these children will tell their grandchildren.”

Our award-winning Shabtis in Schools programme places ancient Egyptian shabti funerary figures in primary and secondary schools across Manchester. The awe and wonder of this artefact is a powerful tool to inspire your pupils, staff and local community.

Manchester Museum is pleased to invite the next phase of schools to take part in this very special programme for 2021-22.

“A fantastic stimulus to hook the children”

“It has been a fantastic opportunity for us [teachers] to develop our subject knowledge”

“The kudos of actually housing a real artefact from a museum put a real positive focus on the school”

This project aims to:

  • raise aspiration and build skills in history for pupils
  • expand subject knowledge and build skills for teachers
  • provide a focus for your community engagement
  • promote cross-curricular collaboration between professionals, inside and outside of the school
  • build social and cultural capital for your pupils

We are offering:

  • professional installation of a genuine museum artefact in your school between January and April 2022 (no additional insurance or security required)
  • a collaborative planning and CPD event in September 2021, and a network of like-minded teachers
  • resources, activity suggestions and case studies to inspire your planning
  • access to museum professional educators, conservators and curators including Egyptologist Dr Campbell Price

The package in total is worth around £1500, but this year we are able to offer it free of charge in return for detailed evaluative feedback and active contribution to resource development.

What would you do with your shabti?

Schools from the first two cohorts have:

  • Invited families, communities and other schools to visit in-school museums, curated and guided by students themselves
  • Hosted both live and digital talks and debates with museum curators, for teachers, students and families
  • Used the shabti to develop teacher skills in teaching history using source material, and in coordinating whole-school projects
  • Held whole-school Shabti Days, which inspired artwork, food, games and more

Get more ideas from the pilot schools case study and blog post!

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Parrs Wood High School Shabti Display 

Who is eligible?

We are able to offer this opportunity to a limited number of state-funded schools inside the M60 motorway.

Want to know more?

Find out more abut what is entailed in the project, our commitment to you, and what we ask in return, by reading the draft project agreement before you apply. You can also contact us by email with any questions or to arrange a phone call.

What are we looking for?

This is a creative, innovative programme where the more you put in the more you will get out. Our first two cohorts of schools have shown that the hook of the artefact is a fantastic way to bring staff, pupils and the community together around a real point of pride and inspiration.

We have a very limited number of spaces on the project and expect demand to be high. Therefore we will prioritise schools who can demonstrate in their application that:

  • their teachers will benefit from the collaborative CPD and development opportunities
  • they will use their shabti creatively (e.g. across a broad curriculum, to teach history innovatively, or for parental engagement in learning)
  • the shabti would have a wide impact in their school community and build cultural capital (e.g. a high number of individuals will be in contact with it and/or plans will allow for deep and rich engagement)

Before you apply …

Please make sure you have read the draft project agreement of expected timescales, our commitment to you, and what we’d be asking your school to commit to. Please make sure your senior leadership team have also read this before you apply. A final project agreement will be sent to the successful schools, for return before the summer holidays.

Ready to go?

Tell us your plans by applying online by 5pm on Tuesday 13 July 2021.

What will happen next?

We will notify successful applicants by Wednesday 14 July. We will then ask for signed copies of the project agreement to be returned by Monday 19 July. More details of resources available will be sent over the summer to aid your long-term planning, which can be completed in full during the CPD event (essential) in September 2021.

“It’s a fantastic hook, and it offers so many opportunities to use as a stimulus for enquiry, not just in history, but there’s so many other options [like] philosophical debates, writing historical fiction about it. There’s all this discovery that children can have and I think that’s a really exciting thing”

“I think it has engaged all our pupils and it has created learning opportunities to develop those key skills, research, that analysis, that evaluation, which are skills they need in all subjects …This experience with the shabti is something these children will tell their grandchildren.”

Apply now

Working Scientifically at the Museum

You might have seen our post in May about ‘Inside Out’ – a project with primary schools last year that had children discovering for themselves how the real-life setting of the museum works in a scientific way. They checked pest traps, created an ethical experiment with tadpoles, curated some ancient Chinese objects….and much more!

The children worked really hard to develop their findings into five fantastic films that were premiered at the Great Science Share flagship event in June, as well as events in schools to share with family and friends. We’re delighted to say that these videos are now live and ready for children all over the world to learn from.

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The videos could be used as an introduction to a science-focused visit to the museum, as part of a discussion about scientific careers, or as an introduction to real-life working scientifically.

They touch on collections care, entomology (bugs!), herpetology (amphibians and reptiles), Egyptology, archaeology, palaeontology, and more. All five areas of working scientifically are featured: Identifying, classifying and grouping; observing over time; research using secondary sources; comparative and fair testing; and pattern-seeking.

We absolutely loved working with the 5 schools, 10 teachers and 150 children who took part in this project, and we hope they had fun too!

“[The project] has been massive for boosting my pupil’s confidence in science.” (project teacher)

“Nearly every child said their highlight for the year was visiting Manchester Museum.” (project teacher)

For future opportunities like this for your pupils, please sign up to the Primary & Early Years E-newsletter. With many thanks to the University of Manchester’s Faculty of Science and Engineering for the Widening Participation funding that made this project possible, and our fantastic partners in SEERIH. We hope you enjoy the films!

Join our award-winning Shabtis in School project

Imagine if your school could host a real ancient Egyptian museum artefact.

What could you do with this unique opportunity?

MM_280219_079

…This experience with the shabti is something these children will tell their grandchildren.”

Our award-winning Shabtis in School project places ancient Egyptian shabti funerary figures in primary and secondary schools across Manchester. The awe and wonder of this artefact is a powerful tool to inspire your pupils, staff and local community.

Manchester Museum is pleased to invite the next phase of schools to take part in this very special project.

“A fantastic stimulus to hook the children”

“It has been a fantastic opportunity for us [teachers] to develop our subject knowledge”

“The kudos of actually housing a real artefact from a museum put a real positive focus on the school”

This project aims to:

  • raise aspiration and build skills in history for pupils
  • expand subject knowledge for teachers
  • provide a focus for your community engagement
  • enhance visibility and reputation of your school
  • promote cross-curricular collaboration between professionals, inside and outside of the school
  • build social and cultural capital for your pupils

We are offering:

  • professional installation of a genuine museum artefact in your school between January and June 2020 (no additional insurance or security required)
  • a collaborative planning and CPD event in September 2019, and a network of like-minded teachers
  • resources, activity suggestions and case studies to inspire your planning
  • access to museum professional educators, conservators and curators including Egyptologist Dr Campbell Price

The package in total is worth around £1500, but this year we are able to offer it free of charge in return for detailed evaluative feedback and active contribution to resource development.

What would you do with your shabti?

Get some ideas from the pilot schools case study.

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Parrs Wood High School Shabti Display 2018-19

Want to know more?

Contact us by email with any questions or to arrange a phone call. Alternatively pop into our Late event on Thursday 20 June for a chat.

What are we looking for?

This is a creative, innovative project where the more you put in the more you will get out. Our pilot schools have shown that the hook of the artefact is a fantastic way to bring staff, pupils and the community together around a real point of pride and inspiration.

We have a very limited number of spaces on the project and expect demand to be high. Therefore we will prioritise schools who can demonstrate in their application that:

  • their teachers will benefit from the collaborative CPD and development opportunities
  • they will use their shabti creatively (e.g. across a broad curriculum, to teach history innovatively, or for parental engagement in learning)
  • the shabti would have a wide impact in their school community (e.g. a high number of individuals will be in contact with it and/or plans will allow for deep and rich engagement)

Before you apply …

See this draft outline of expected timescales, our commitment to you, and what we’d be asking your school to commit to. Please make sure your senior leadership team have read this before you apply.

Ready to go?

Tell us your plans by applying online by 5pm on 28 June 2019.

What will happen next?

We will notify successful applicants by Friday 5 July. We will then ask for signed copies of the project agreement to be returned by Monday 15 July. More details of resources available will be sent over the summer to aid your long-term planning, which can be completed in full during the CPD event (essential) in September 2019.

“It’s a fantastic hook, and it offers so many opportunities to use as a stimulus for enquiry, not just in history, but there’s so many other options [like] philosophical debates, writing historical fiction about it. There’s all this discovery that children can have and I think that’s a really exciting thing”

“I think it has engaged all our pupils and it has created learning opportunities to develop those key skills, research, that analysis, that evaluation, which are skills they need in all subjects …This experience with the shabti is something these children will tell their grandchildren.”

Apply now

Around the World to Manchester: Clarendon Sixth Form College Photography Exhibit

Each year Manchester Museum sets a brief for BTEC National Diploma Photography students from Clarendon Sixth Form College with instruction to take inspiration from our collection and create images linked to a particular theme. This year the theme was ‘journeys’ and the seven students who produced images discovered numerous ways to expand on what they saw when they visited the Museum back in February 2018.

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Clarendon Sixth Form College’s Exhibit: Around the World to Manchester – in The Study at Manchester Museum until July 2018

During their visit students were introduced to the collection through a gallery tour, led by one of our fantastic visitor team members, and had the unique opportunity to get a peek behind the scenes with our curators. Hearing about all the ways various cultural artefacts arrived at the Museum and the journeys our insect specimens made during their lifetimes started the students on their creative process. After the visit, they took their knowledge and impressions about the Museum’s collection and applied it to their own experience; with some of them creating personal pieces of work that link directly into who they are and where they have come from.

Each student started this brief at the Museum, exploring our collection and discovering new things, but as their ideas progressed they have all forged their own path to very different creative outputs and they should be very proud of the resulting images.

If you can, drop by Manchester Museum and see their work in person. The exhibit is located in The Study on the 3rd floor and will be on display until the end of July 2018.

Also see: Photography Students’ work exhibited at Museum – from Clarendon Sixth Form College website

Expressions of interest invited: ‘Discover India’ Music Day at Manchester Museum

Milapfest, in partnership with Manchester Museum and Band on the Wall, are inviting expressions of interest in a day of Indian Arts Workshops on 19 March 2018 10am-2.30pm at Manchester Museum.

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Classes will spend the day learning one of four art forms, culminating in a final performance for other students and the public at the end of the day.

Workshops may include:

  • Tabla (North Indian Classical Percussion)
  • Bharatnatyam (South Indian Classical Dance)
  • Storytelling with hand and facial gestures (mudras)
  • Rangoli Art
  • Kathak (North Indian Classical dance)

These workshops will be delivered to suit the ages and abilities of the class, and are designed to be fully inclusive and interactive. The tutors for these workshops are sourced by Milapfest based on their expertise and experience in their field, several of whom are world-renowned artists and tutors.

The day is arranged through New North and South and is kindly funded by Arts Council England. It is also supporting development of Manchester Museum’s new South Asia Gallery as part of the Courtyard Project.

We have space for a limited number of students, from Reception to KS4.

Please click here to express your interest in the event before 5pm on Friday 16 February 2018.

Selected classes will be notified by 2 March. Priority will be given to schools who can explain how this day would enrich their wider curriculum.

The day’s activities are fully-funded, though schools will need to provide their own transport. For questions please contact amy.mcdowall@manchester.ac.uk.

 

Remembering the impact of Partition

 

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Cedar Mount Pupils in the Memories of Partition exhibition

With the 70th anniversary of the independence of India and Pakistan happening earlier this year, Manchester Museum worked with members of Manchester’s South Asian community to explore the experiences and legacies of the creation of India and Pakistan in 1947, with a dedicated exhibition space up on our third floor to share this between August 2017 and January 2018.  Memories of Partition is a collaboration between Manchester Museum, Manchester BME network, Royal Exchange Theatre and Ahmend Iqball Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre. The exhibition showcases six films featuring community members sharing their connections to Partition.

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Trinity CofE School pupil in Memories of Partition

Partition is not an easy subject area to discuss, with an estimated 15 million people being displaced in possibly the largest mass migration in human history, especially not with pupils who cannot understand why this topic might be relevant for them even if they are of South Asian heritage. This is why Cat Lumb, Secondary and Post-16 Coordinator (Humanities & Arts) and Amy McDowall (Primary Coordinator) decided to invite a small number of Primary and Secondary pupils to visit the exhibition and also speak with the community participants involved; to see if it would make a difference to the way they thought about this tumultuous and difficult time in history and to help them write a response detailing their own impressions to share with those whom Partition has impacted.

Pupils had an opportunity to spend time on the Memories of Partition exhibition and make connections with the objects presented there, as well as watch some of the oral history films created to accompany the exhibition. All of these films – featuring community members either directly, or indirectly, affected by Partition – are available on the Museum’s YouTube channel and one with Dr. Gandhi (who spoke with all school groups) is highlighted below. [Please note: content is sensitive and may be upsetting.]

 

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Primary School pupils collected images of ways that artist Reena Kallat represented ‘borders’ through nature

After seeing the exhibition, pupils were also able to view the stunning artwork of acclaimed artist Reena Saini Kallat, whose newly-commissioned sculpture Chorus can be seen alongside works that include a series of hybridised animals that represent various nations in conflict.

This thought-provoking exhibition animates the museum with new meanings and inquiries into ideas of identity, memory, history and the natural world, and links in with the topic of Partition.

 

 

Cedar Mount pupils

Cedar Mount Pupils crafting their responses

 

 

It was in this creative environment pupils were asked to collate a response to share with community participants.

For the Secondary students, this was done before speaking with any of them, and demonstrates their newly developed empathetic responses to an event that many knew about but had little understanding of:

 

 

 

 

“Now that I’ve learnt about Partition I feel disgusted and really upset imagining people being murdered and witnessing so many deaths at a young age” – KS3 Pupil

“I feel that although it was a time of suffering and sadness some people used it as the start of a new life with new experiences. It was a chance to learn new things as people moved abroad, however I still feel sad that the experience was a stressful time” – KS4 Pupil

“I’ve learnt that this is bigger than I thought because they had to go elsewhere and there was a lot of conflict.” – KS3 Pupil

Their written response was detailed and we can only share small snippets here, but some are insightful and particularly astute:

“I went through pain and conflict; being separated, abandoned and lonely; scenes of fighting, killing torturing; but we never knew why at the time; because we were young.”

“I went through many challenges, emotions and struggles; such as leaving home, and leaving our possessions like jewellery, money and memories behind. I was filled with fear as many were being killed. I went through pain and suffering as well as misery and grief. There was lots of bloodshed.”

“I came to a different country. I felt upset and uncomfortable. I missed my old house along with my family. It was confusing and scary.”

“Now I feel happy that I am living in such a developed country which not only has improved me it has improved a lot of other people, but even though I am happy, I am still sad that I have lost something un-priceable [sic.] like my childhood memories.

The Primary School pupils created a group poem following their interview with Dr. Gandhi, which can be seen here: I came from a city full of rumours. 

Some teachers also shared their thoughts about the day:

“[The activities] gave the children the chance to think about the same issue from a different perspective. It was like it gave them layers of depth to the issue.”

“It gave the Indian/Pakistini children a sense of their own history and culture. It was also interesting to hear that some people thought partition was a good thing.”

“The children came away with a greater depth and understanding of partition. It was fantastic. Thank you so much.”

With thanks to University of Manchester’s Widening Participation Department who helped to fund this project. 

At Face Value: Manchester Museum, Common Cause Foundation and TeachFirst

Guest blog by Eleanor Ridley, TeachFirst Ambassador and Teacher at The Willows Primary School. 

When I originally saw that there was an opportunity via TeachFirst Summer Projects to work with the Manchester Museum, I sent my application in roughly as fast as a lightning strike. The main purpose of my time here has been to work with Secondary and Post-16 Coordinator, Cat Lumb, and Common Cause Coordinator, Shanna Lennon to investigate what type of values are communicated on the Manchester Museum’s pages about learning as part of the Museum’s work with Common Cause Foundation.

What is Common Cause Foundation?

Common Cause Foundation is an organisation which studies cultural values and explores how we can understand these in order to help us respond to current social and environmental challenges. One of the main findings is that 74% of people place more importance on compassionate values than on selfish values. However, 77% of the people interviewed believe that other people hold selfish values to be more important. Essentially, we have a gap between what we actually value, and what we believe about what people value, and it makes the world a lonelier place, where people are less likely to feel connected to their local and global community. The questions for major social institutions are: How are we going to communicate our values to help reduce this gap? And what are our values in the first place?

The Values of the Learning Team

At the beginning of the project, Cat sent me to go and find out what the values of the Learning Team were to see whether everyone was on the same page or not. The result was that yes, the Learning Team really do have shared values and a shared vision, and a shared understanding of the value of learning at Manchester Museum. The team members separately proclaimed the following  unanimous beliefs, in roughly the same order, every time.

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Some word art displaying the core values of the Learning Team when interviewed

1. The value of curiosity and self-directed learning and getting the chance to explore for yourself.

2. The authentic experience of being in a museum and handling real objects from the museum collections.

3. The importance of access to this cultural capital for students from all backgrounds and all abilities to the collections.

4. The museum as somewhere which can inspire aspirations, enabling students to see personal possibilities and their potential for the future.

Through every meeting and discussion that I witnessed, these values have been transparent. It is very obvious, even in two weeks, that the people working in the Learning Team care deeply and consistently about reaching out to a wide demographic (literally taking the museum to the people if the people can’t make it to the museum). It is also clear that they have a profound belief in the value of the experiences that they can offer through Manchester Museum collections, educationally and emotionally. Communicating these values will be the icing on the cake.

Education and Museums

Those working in education know the huge challenges that are to be faced in fighting educational inequality, which can be hugely daunting. As the Common Cause Foundation research shows, the feeling that benevolence is not widespread can lead to a feeling of apathy and helplessness. Organisations such as TeachFirst and Manchester Museum have tremendous power in communicating common goals and helping spread the message that students should get access to rich educational experiences, regardless of their socio-economic background, and inspiring more people to join the conversation.

This project has been an inspiring and heartening insight into the hearts and minds behind the educational programmes at Manchester Museum, and I wish the team the best of luck in continuing to promote their message.

Pictures

Come to the Museum to be Rainforest Investigators!

Today we officially launch our exciting new ‘Rainforest Investigators’ session here at the Manchester Museum. This a brand new environmental education session based on the differing rainforest habitats and developed for Key Stage 2 pupils, which is for upper primary/age 7-11 year olds. It links strongly to National Curriculum Year 4 Science ‘Living things and […]

via Rainforest Investigators — FROG BLOG MANCHESTER

Early Years & Childhood Studies Placement

In January we were pleased to welcome a placement from Manchester Metropolitan University to work with us over the course of three weeks. Eve got a chance to see a selection of the learning offer by observing a variety of workshops and work alongside those in the Learning Team. At the end of the placement Eve was kind enough to write a post for us, and here it is:

My name is Eve Bokor and I am an Early Years and Childhood Studies student at Manchester Metropolitan University. Working at Manchester Museum has been simply a pleasure. I have worked with the Early Years, Primary and Secondary school team on a variety of workshops that have been excellent to observe, engage and even learn myself. Any school that has experienced having a workshop at the museum is lucky. The school workshops include a large variety of topics, examples of the ones I saw were ancient Egypt, Stone Age, ancient History, Animal Explorers and Baby Explorers. These workshops aid children to explore the different topics in a create informal manner. A common theme I observed in the workshops were all children were well behaved, curious and eager to provide the knowledge they have or give suggestions to what they think. All the staff that worked with the children were friendly and enthusiastic, offering support and expert knowledge for the children. What I particularly admire is the level of involvement the children have in workshops which includes being about to handle the artefacts (which is there is quite a selection of them).

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Eve’s favourite gallery was the Vivarium

I worked there for three weeks,and  in that time I have seen a fair amount of the artefacts in the Museum, but I know there is so much more to see: Endless information about the vast number of topics. Another part of the Museum that I admire is the environmentally friendly example it sets for the citizens of Manchester. Offering information about current issues that are endangering the living species and the environment we live in. There is practical advice on how an individual can help which I think is vital in the current climate. Overall this Museum is a spectacular place for all ages and abilities, because it is a well of knowledge that feeds the population of Manchester.

‘Extinction or Survival?’ – new video resource for schools

We have a new and exciting resource to share with you today, created by 60 Year 3 children from Crab Lane Community Primary School in Crumpsall.

This short video is designed to be used inside the  fabulous ‘Extinction or Survival?’ exhibition, at Manchester Museum until 20 April 2017.

The exhibition contains some difficult stories about the many species that are no longer with us, from the dodo to the Tasmanian tiger. But it also tells a story of hope: what can we do to help endangered species?

It will be of special interest to KS2 teachers who are working on ‘Living Things and their Habitats’.

To use the video, we recommend bringing tablets to the Museum and sharing them between small groups of children with an adult. You can load the video via this page, and pause it each time you see the name of a species to allow you time to find it in the exhibition. You can also pause at the ‘Over to you’ questions, as a chance to get the children thinking more deeply about the exhibition’s themes. The video can also be used outside the Museum if needed.

The children of Crab Lane would love to know what you think of their video! Let us know  by adding a comment below.

If you would like to visit ‘Extinction or Survival?’ you can do so for free, but please let us know you are coming by completing the booking enquiry form on our website. This helps ensure a great experience for you and for the other schools visiting our (very busy!) museum that day. You might also want to consider our popular KS2 session ‘Habitats and You’.

The story behind the video …

Every year, Kids in Museums ‘Takeover Day’ invites children into meaningful roles in museums and galleries. As our ‘Extinction or Survival?’ exhibition was due to open in September 2016, we thought it would be great if some children could create a really useful resource for other schools visiting the exhibition.

Using  contacts through the wonderful Schools Network Choir, we found two Year 3 teachers from Crab Lane who were really excited to do something a bit different with their classes that term.

We met up and planned an amazing series of activities for the kids: first, both classes came separately to visit the museum, to research the exhibition and to learn what makes a great tour. We all practised saying in big loud voices, “WELCOME TO MANCHESTER MUSEUM!!!”

Then, back in school, the children worked in small groups with their teachers to devise their own tours. This means that the tours are all the children’s own words – amazing.

In the meantime, staff at the Museum were busy arranging loads of great activities for Takeover Day itself. Almost every department was involved, from conservation and collections to marketing, volunteers and even the Vivarium team!

368c259d-4466-4d5e-ad31-f54c4674b335On 18 November – a cold and snowy day – all 60 kids descended on the Museum for a pretty full-on day! All the children gave their tours LIVE for members of the  public. This was incredibly brave but they had lovely clear voices and even took questions from the audience! They were also total pros being filmed by Steve from the Museum.

As well as their tours, the kids made a giant rainforest collage, helped clean objects in the conservation studios, went behind the scenes in the Entomology stores, and welcomed visitors.

At the very end of the day, all the children said they would love to work in a museum when they grow up. We can’t wait!

Manchester Museum would like to say a huge THANK YOU to all the children, teachers and other staff involved in making the project such a success. We hope you enjoy their video!