Trainee Blog: October

My name is Bryony, the Museum Learning and Engagement Trainee and this blog is going to give you an insight to what myself and the Learning team are up to and what I learn along the way. Hopefully inspiring future generations of Museum professionals. This blog will be monthly updates of what I’ve been up to!

October had to be the busiest month since returning to the Museum. Not only did I get to do some more school holiday activities but I also got the chance to observe my first two learning visits.

Half-Term was my main task in October: preparing rocket kits, setting up the Where’s Wally? Trail and donning my space suit as Dr. Peach to assist with our rocket powered science shows. With our visitor numbers up from last year (something we really weren’t expecting) and lots of last minute bookings, it meant mornings were spent replenishing our rocket kits followed by, on some days, five consecutive science shows! It was tiring but very rewarding. The positive feedback via social media, TripAdvisor and our virtual bulletin board, along with the interactions with the public were well worth the busy days. Compared to summer, which was a lot more relaxed, it made me realise how busy Museums can actually be at Half-Term. Going into the traineeship I was naive and thought that term time would be the Learning department's busiest time and didn’t really think about the school holidays. Maybe this is because I haven’t experienced the Learning department in full swing with school visits but that is something to look forward to!

Setting up Wheres Wally in the Downton Mini

Other than half term I did get to observe my first two educational visits, one with our partnership school and one with a group of apprentices. These were completely different audiences with one being a SEN primary school and the other over 16’s. It was great to watch the rest of the team and how they interacted with each group and even be able to interact with these groups myself. The skill of being able to adapt to different groups is one that my colleagues do really well and something I wish to learn more about as we hopefully do more school visits.

Apprentices Jim at MorrisTo end the success of October we were unfortunately met with another lockdown. However, this has helped us slow back down after a manic couple of weeks and allowed us to work on some exciting projects. You will have to read next month's blog to find out more about them though!