Museum and Art Gallery

Opening hours:

  • Monday Closed
  • Tuesday-Saturday 10am - 5pm
  • Sunday 12pm - 4pm

Find us at:

The Strand, Derby DE1 1BS
01332 641901
Plan your visitto Museum and Art Gallery
The Silk Mill

Opening hours:

  • Monday-Wednesday Closed
  • Thursday 3pm - 9pm
  • Friday Closed
  • Saturday 1pm - 5pm
  • Sunday Closed

Find us at:

Silk Mill Lane, Derby DE1 3AF
01332 641901
Plan your visitto The Silk Mill
Pickford's House

Opening hours:

  • Monday Closed
  • Tuesday-Saturday 10am - 5pm
  • Sunday Closed

Find us at:

41 Friar Gate, Derby DE1 1DA
01332 641901
Plan your visitto Pickford's House

Key Stage 2

Secrets of the mummies

Museum & Art Gallery

You will be met by our costumed High Priestess, Aziza. Her Highness will lead you into the gallery to describe life in Ancient Egypt and share some fascinating stories about objects in the Museum. All pupils will have the opportunity to dress as ancient Egyptians. The class will be split into 2 groups. Half will discover the process of mummification using replica objects and a willing volunteer, whilst the others visit our Mummies and the Egyptian collection. The class will all participate to ensure the dead will live for eternity in the Egyptian afterlife!

Optional make and take

Each pupil will have the opportunity to make their own clay shabti to take away.

Key stage information

From the National curriculum Key stage 2: History: “pupils…know and understand significant aspects of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations: the expansion and dissolution of empires: characteristics of non-European societies…pupils should be taught about the achievements of the earliest civilisations”, (including Ancient Egypt).

Adventures in the Stone Age

Museum & Art Gallery

What kind of world did we live in 40,000 years ago? How did we survive towards the end of an ice age, with technologies based upon stone, wood, antlers, bones and fire – and upon human ingenuity! This interactive and hands-on session examines the time frame of the Palaeolithic era and considers climate, geography and lifestyles – before history began!

Optional make and take

Each pupil will have the opportunity to create their own piece of prehistoric art.

Key stage information

This session supports pupils being taught about ‘changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age’ (National curriculum Key stage 2: History), by examining the timespans of prehistory (Palaeolithic and Neolithic) in relation to the historical periods studied on the curriculum.

Roman Derby

Museum & Art Gallery

The session begins with costumed guide, Senilis the Roman Potter, meeting the children. He shares tales about his life as a soldier in the fort of Derventio using the objects on display at the Museum to illustrate his story. Derby is well-known for its large Roman cemetery and pupils will take part in recreating the elaborate customs of a Roman funeral.

Optional make and take

Each pupil will have the opportunity to make their own replica Derbyshire-ware pot to take away

Key stage information

From the National curriculum Key stage 2: History – See Secrets of the mummies above and, “At Key stage 2, pupils should be taught about: The Roman Empire and its impact on Britain. This could include…’Romanisation’ of Britain: sites such as Caerwent* and the impact of technology, culture and beliefs. (* in this case Derventio – the Roman name for Derby)

Vikings!

Museum & Art Gallery

The session begins with an exploration of the Viking settlement of Britain and the conflicts with the Anglo-Saxons, with particular reference to Derby. Pupils will examine a replica Viking burial, complete a Skeleton Recording Sheet and learn how to use objects to find out information about a person’s life and status. Children will write a postcard using Viking runes for their classmates to decipher.

Optional make and take

Each pupil will have the opportunity to make their own Hammer of Thor pendant to take away.

Key stage information

From the National curriculum Key stage 2: History – see Secrets of the mummies above and, “Pupils should be taught about…the Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor (including) Viking raids and invasion”.

Victorian voyage

Pickford’s House

Your class will be welcomed to the house by a costumed Victorian lady or gentleman. They will then adopt the role of prospective applicants for a new servant post of the house and try on replica Victorian clothing. The class will be split into smaller groups to engage in washing day activities and will use our handling collection to investigate mysterious objects using our ‘Become a Museum Curator’ worksheet.

Optional make and take

Each pupil will have the opportunity to make a peg doll to take away.

Key stage information

From the National curriculum Key stage 2: History – “Pupils should continue to develop a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history…they should note connections, contrasts and trends over time and develop the appropriate use of historical terms.”

Espionage and intrigue: the early years of The Silk Mill

The Silk Mill

Derby’s Silk Mill is the site of the world’s first powered factory, and is part of the Derwent Valley World Heritage Site. Find out about the mill’s origins in the early 18th century – at the very beginning of the industrial revolution – and about the stories surrounding the first owner, John Lombe, and his mysterious demise…at the hands of an Italian woman! Also find out about the life cycle of the silk worm, and the process whereby its thread is obtained.

Optional make and take

Pupils will have the opportunity to create their own twined key ring.

Key stage information

Relevant to the National curriculum Key stage 2: History
See Victorian voyage above and “Significant historical events people and places in their own locality” beginning from key stage 1.

WW1: Bert and Agatha

Museum & Art Gallery

Inspired by actual postcards written by a soldier at the front to his family in Derby, this session explores the changing lives both of men and women during WW1, and the impact of the war upon the nation. Using Museum artefacts and objects, Bert, a soldier, and Agatha, a nurse, bring their stories to life. Pupils will have the opportunity to handle original and replica objects.

Optional make and take

Using postcards from our collection as inspiration, each pupil will have the opportunity to create their own postcard to take away.

Key stage information

From the National curriculum Key stage 2: History – See Victorian voyage above and, “Pupils should be taught about a significant turning point in British history, for example the first railways or the Battle of Britain”.

Children at war

Pickford’s House

Your pupils will experience what it was like to shelter in the Pickford’s House cellar during a World War II air raid attack. Our costumed ARP Warden will train your pupils to deal with gas attacks and incendiary bombs. There will also be the chance to explore the causes and effects of rationing on people’s lives during WWII. After WWII, Britain would never be the same again!

Optional make and take

Your pupils will have the opportunity to make a model of an Anderson Shelter to take away.

Key stage information

Relevant to the National curriculum Key stage 2: History – see Victorian voyage and WW1: Bert and Agatha above.

Joseph Wright and the orrery

Museum & Art Gallery

This fun and interactive schools session uses Joseph Wright’s famous painting, ‘A philosopher giving a lecture on the orrery’, as a starting point to examine how an orrery – a mechanical representation of the solar system – explains to us the relative positions of the planets around the sun, and of the moons around the planets. By creating a human orrery with the children themselves, they can then explore space, distance and gravity, and then investigate the phases of the moon. And other space mysteries!

Optional make and take

Each pupil will make their own tellurian – a mini version of the orrery representing the sun, the earth and the moon.

Key stage information

The session meets requirements of the National curriculum Key stage 2: Science – ‘Earth and space’, and has been developed by a real astrophysicist!!

Not just looking at art

Museum & Art Gallery

Pupils will be introduced to alternative ways of experiencing art through activities which encourage active participation, such as ‘performing’ artworks as a human orchestra. The activities, in the renowned Joseph Wright gallery, are designed to enrich pupils’ interpretations of the works on display and recognise that an encounter with art is a multi-sensory experience.

Optional make and take

Each pupil will have the opportunity to try their hand at portraiture.

Key stage information

From the National curriculum Key stage 2: Art and Design – “Pupils…should be able to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design…(and)…all pupils (are taught)…“about great artists, architects and designers in history”.

Remarkable rocks and fantastic fossils

Museum & Art Gallery

Pupils work with museum specialists to explore and understand the three types of rock, working scientifically in examining appearance and physical properties, and discovering the differences in hardness and permeability of rocks. They will learn about the rock cycle and how fossils have been created. They will find and cast their own fossils. Fun and interactive!

Key stage information

National curriculum Key stage 2: Science – Rocks

Classification – that’s the name of the game!

Museum & Art Gallery

One of the great ongoing scientific challenges is the classification – and understanding – of living things. Two biologists and a zoologist have developed this session to help pupils apply some of the methods used to group and categorise animals, and look for the evidence of animal lifestyles and life cycles. Food chains, predators and prey – and all that!

Key stage information

National curriculum Key stage 2: Science – Living things and their habitats, and Evolution and inheritance

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