This past Wedneday and Friday last week I worked with the Museum’s Education team by putting together and delivering a workshop for Key Stage 3 Students. This was part of a secondary enrichment day the Manchester Museum was running.
My session was mainly based around animal skeletons. However, rather than having the students tell me what the animal was, I asked them to explain to me how they think it lived by examining its anatomy. I split the students into 3 groups and gave them each a specimen to examine. For the purposes of this session, I gave them each a specimen that was unfamiliar (in this case a taxidermied Kiwi, Sloth skeleton and Hyena skull. I also had a Tamandua skeleton to demonstrate the concept to them). I felt they would be more inclined to think about the anatomy rather than what the animal was this way. Next, they explored the new Living Worlds gallery and made observations about the animals in there. They asked lots of questions about skeletons and dangerous animals. Popular topics! Some of the feedback I got from the students about the session was lovely. Here are some of my favorites:
It was blood-pumping! I enjoyed every minute of it and am still sweating.
The Living World’s workshop was really interesting because I learnt how to find out about animals by examining their bones.
I learnt that museums aren’t boring.
I felt physically exhausted when the session was over, but had a real sense of achievement and was glad that most of the students seemed really inspired and excited about animal adapatation.
Many thanks to Alexa, Cat and Rebecca for helping me with my first KS3 Session!