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What's New This Autumn - Nine top attractions offering new and exciting days out for schools for the coming year

Written by: Elmtree Press


With school’s returning this week after the long summer holiday many teachers start planning the academic year ahead and thinking about that next school trip.  Rather than take your class to the same attraction or museum as you have done previously why not try something new?  Around the country many museums and attractions have been busy creating new workshops to launch this term.  Here is our round up of the best on offer throughout the country:- 

1. Bristol Museums have launched their new calendar of events for the coming term. They all sound so exciting it will be hard to choose!

The ever popular ‘Christmas at Blaise’ school workshop returns for 2019

Dinosaur Takeover is back at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery in November. The event is in partnership with the University of Bristol.
“We urge schools to book up quick as this roar-some full dinosaur experience is usually a sell out!” 

A new literacy workshop is being launched at The Georgian House Museum, which is really fun and engaging with role play and drama
and a trip back in time. It’s called ‘Wordy Dot Wordsworth and the hunt for the missing towel!’ 

They are also getting involved with the national Kids in Museums event which takes place in November, where we will effectively let a group of school children takeover some museum tasks and.… eek! They will  not only learn about our collections but will learn about museum operations too.  For further information, contact the Learning Team.

2. Monkey World, Dorset
Class Visits are always an invaluable opportunity for teachers to prepare pupils for a school trip and Monkey World in Dorset offer this service.

The education team have the coolest car they can now travel to schools in and do follow up / pre-visit sessions with! An outreach session helps to support a school visit to Monkey World.  The visit to your school combined with your trip to Monkey World is free except the cost of mileage which is 45p per mile up to 100 mile radius of the park.

3. Skipton Castle, Yorkshire
School visits have once again been very popular throughout 2019 and the Education team  are now preparing for the coming year.  A significant anniversary for the castle is that of Lady Anne Clifford, who was born at Skipton Castle on  30 January 1590.  Lady Anne was responsible for restoring much of the Castle from  1657-1659 after the ‘slighting’ by Cromwell’s troops, following the Civil War. She also planted the beautiful yew tree at the centre of the Conduit Court in 1659 to celebrate the restoration.

There is a Teachers’ Resource Pack available to order here.   

4. Shakespeare’s Houses, Stratford-Upon-Avon
If you are looking to kick-start your Shakespeare topic this September?  Then look no further than a visit to Shakespeare’s Houses where Shakespeare and British history are brought to life in a practical and creative way through our award winning education programme. From Primary through to A Level, their sessions aim to not only enhance the National Curriculum, but to inspire and engage your students as well.

A new workshop has been created based upon A Midsummer Night’s Dream as an option for this fun, energetic and interactive story telling workshop for Key Stage 1 pupils.  During this workshop, children will not only discover what life was like for William Shakespeare as a schoolboy, family man, actor and playwright, but they will also be able to take part in an exciting retelling of either The Tempest, or new for 2019/20, A Midsummer Night’s Dream! 

'Getting to Know Will' is another workshop where your students can learn what William Shakespeare’s life was like from his to birth until his death in an interactive history focused workshop. Enjoy hands on activities, investigate plague remedies with the Apothecary, and visit our strong room to see original documents, paintings and artefacts. There will also be the opportunity to walk in Shakespeare’s footsteps, touring his childhood home and visit Shakespeare’s New Place, the site of his final home in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Outreach Sessions for Key Stage 3 and 4

Can’t bring your students to us? We’ll come to you!  Designed specifically for Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 students, we can now bring our fun, interactive sessions to your school with our new Outreach Spotlights! Enjoy a 60 minute Spotlight on a play of your choice, followed by an optional 30 minute workshop* and a 10 minute question and answer session. 

Your students will see live performances of key scenes and have the opportunity to direct our experienced drama practitioners, allowing them to unpack specific moments of the chosen play. Students will also be able to get on their feet and experience the texture and taste of the language, enabling them to engage meaningfully with Shakespeare’s language in action.  

For more information on these and other workshops contact the learning team.  

5. Spinnaker Tower, Hampshire
A NEW key stage 1 educational resource for 2020  ‘Head in the Clouds’ is being launched this year.

Pupils can expand their knowledge about the Water Cycle and all the different kinds of weather whilst observing it first-hand, 100 metres up in the clouds!  Your pupils will explore the different weather and weather systems that shape coasts and lands across the following National Curriculum subjects: Maths, English, Music, Art, Geography and Science.

6. Ingrow Museum – Keighley and Worth Valley Railway, Yorkshire
Says Matt, the Education Manager for the Ingrow Museum, “It's the 50th anniversary of the Railway Children film next year, so we'll be pushing our related workshop for schools near and far”.

Rail Story at Ingrow, part of the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, will be celebrating 50 years of the Railway Children film during 2020. The workshop takes place at one of the film's main locations, Oakworth Station, and at Ingrow Station, home to two museums. The activities at Oakworth include visiting locations such as Perks' cottage, the station's Ladies Room and the coal stack yard, as well as a guided tour of the ticket office and platform and Railway Children challenges! At Ingrow, you can explore the two museums - Engine Shed and Carriage Works. Here, you can sit in many of the carriages used in the film and stand on the footplate of the Lord Mayor, a loco used to publicise the film. Other activities include a 'paper chase' hunt and dressing up Edwardian style for a photo opportunity. Schools can eat their packed lunches in a station building, garden or a Harry Potter-style compartment carriage. Add on a rail journey on a steam or diesel train to complete your visit. 

Workshops and museum visits are available from September 2019, rail journeys subject to timetable.

7. The British Motor Museum, Warwickshire will be encouraging children of all ages to visit and enjoy plenty of rocket fuelled fun during the October half term from 26 October – 3 November!

Recycled Rockets will enable children to make their own rocket out of recycled materials, whether it be a rocket car, a river rocket or a space rocket. Families can join the Rocket Powered family tour every day at 1.30pm when the costumed guides will explore the concept of ‘power’. 

Rocket K’nex Cars will run from Monday to Friday. Children can design and build their own Rocket K'nex Car and see how far it travels from the pneumatic rocket launch. The activity is delivered by the STEM ambassadors from MOD Kineton. Blast off colouring also enables children to choose their favourite car or rocket picture, colour it in and watch it come to life with the Quiver App. For prices and opening times see their website.

8. Cotswold Wildllife Park, Oxfordshire have had a baby boom this summer and now is the time to come and see their new residents while they are cute and cuddly.  One of the many new arrivals include two Penguin chicks - Ripley and Newt. They have now left their nest boxes and joined the rest of the colony. 

The Park has welcomed the latest addition to the Chapman’s Zebra family – an energetic female foal who has been attracting the attention of visitors with her incredible speed. When she was just a few days old, the newborn was galloping around the paddock. Keepers usually name newborns, but pop royalty - Spice Girl Geri Horner, recently paid the Park a visit and was given the rare honour of naming the foal. She decided to call her Geri. Visitors can see the youngster in the Zebra enclosure opposite the Rhino paddock.

9.  Eureka! are launching a new microsite specifically aimed at teachers this term.  They also have two new workshops celebrating the 50th anniversary for the Apollo 11 moon mission:-

Science Show: Journey to the Moon – KS2 to mark the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission which successfully landed astronauts on the moon, this show will explore the relationship between the Sun, Earth and Moon including why we get day and night and why we see different shapes of the Moon as well as a quick tour of the other planets in the solar system.

 Mission Control – KS1 - Working scientifically and inspired by the Apollo 11 mission, pupils will become rocket engineers to test and identify the best fuel for blasting a rocket. They will design and make a rocket case before launching their team’s rocket to see if they chose the right fuel.