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LAINet news from Clare Barnes: Kids in Museums Takeover Day sharing event at the Mary Rose Museum

Clare Barnes, Learning Officer at the Mary Rose Museum and a member of the LAINet (Learning Access and Interpretation Network) steering group, provides an update on the Kids in Museums event hosted at the Mary Rose Museum in June. The idea for Kids in Museums and the Mary Rose Museum to collaborate on this event arose from a conversation at a recent LAINet seminar. Find our more about how your museum can get involved in LAINet.

The Kids in Museums Takeover Team recently held a sharing event at the Mary Rose Museum. The aim was to raise awareness and encourage more museums to take part in the Children’s Commissioner’s Takeover Day this year on Friday 21 November 2014. Jenie MacIndoe explained that 115 organisations across the country and over 3000 young people took part last year. 'It’s a day on which children are given meaningful roles, working alongside staff and volunteers to participate in the life of the museum.'

Catherine Coleman from The Novium, Chichester explained how they worked in partnership with Fishbourne Roman Palace to enable secondary students to work with the museum team on event planning, display dressing and creating and evaluating learning resources. Pupils also worked in the museum store. Clare Barnes talked about Takeover Day at the Mary Rose Museum where primary pupils took over visitor services roles and social media, including our Twitter feed! For both museums, there were great benefits to taking part: better understanding of what interests children, strengthening ties with local schools and good PR. Staff who do not usually work directly with children really enjoyed the opportunity and older visitors were surprised and delighted at what the young people had achieved.

Delegates heard from the Takeover Team about what is involved and what help is on offer. The successes and challenges of working with young people as well as ideas for Takeover Day 2014 were discussed. Solutions were suggested to potential difficulties including how to sell the event to senior management and how to get teachers, who are short on time and bombarded with many different opportunities, on board.

Representatives attended from museums across the region and beyond, including Fordingbridge Museum, the Army Medical Services Museum, Royal Armouries Fort Nelson, Gilbert White’s House, Red House Museum, Beaulieu, Maritime Archaeology Trust, Trowbridge Museum, SS Robin Trust, English Heritage and the Natural History Museum.

Find out more

Register for Takeover Day this year


Clare Barnes, Learning Officer, Mary Rose Museum

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