Learning Sessions

Our learning sessions and workshops are all linked to the school curriculum. They will provide an opportunity for pupils to interact with real objects and works of art. Each half-day session is available as a morning session or afternoon session (Monday to Friday) and will last between 1½ and 2 hours. We cater for one class at a time. We have also developed many virtual sessions – please see the link below to our page on the Simply Schools website for further information.

The following are our most popular sessions but please see our Bespoke Sessions if you want something different. All sessions below cost £2.85 per child for half day session, £5.70 per child for a full day session. You can book sessions by emailing  the museum direct at: museum@blackburn.gov.uk or by calling 01254 667130.

For detailed lesson plans and risk assessments for each session, please visit our page on the Simply Schools website.

WW2 – Home Front KS2

Your pupils will find out about the impact of 2nd World War on the people of Blackburn and have the opportunity to handle a selection of objects from the period.

The children have to complete two activities; firstly they have to find out for themselves about different aspects of WW2 in Blackburn – evacuees, rationing, the Blackout etc. Then they have a guided tour of a range of original objects from the war, finding out what they were used for and picking up and handling them.

Half day session

We have created a series of short films on this subject that can be used in the classroom. Follow this link to our YouTube Channel. 

Portraits KS1

What does a portrait tell us about the sitter? Your pupils will learn to unravel the clues that can be found in the picture of a person. The children and staff are encouraged to look around the gallery, choose their favourite picture and talk about why they like it; no talking in hushed tones here…

Finally, your pupils will learn about the rules behind portrait painting before they have a go for themselves and make their own portrait which can be developed back in the classroom.

Half day session

Toys KS1

The session is divided into three parts; first, we look at toys, both old & new and explore the ways in which we can tell ‘old’ from ‘new’. At the same time the children learn how the old toys were played with.

Then your pupils get to play with the toys before, finally, sitting down and making their own toy to take back to school.

Half day session

Life in Ancient Egypt KS2

Your pupils will get the opportunity to find out all about Ancient Egypt by talking to a real Egyptologist! The children will use objects from the collection, both those on display in our Ancient Egypt room and in a handling session, to find out what objects from Ancient Egypt can tell us about the lives of the people who used them.

Finally, your pupils will take part in a craft activity.

Half day session

Life in a Victorian Town KS2

The session is built around a carousel of three activities. After looking at the late eighteenth century evolution of the towns of Pennine Lancashire into industrial towns, your pupils will split into three groups – to handle objects from the period, discover about working in a weaving shed and different aspects of life in a Victorian mill town.

Half day session

Inventors and Inventions KS1/2

Our museum is full of different inventions and the children will spend half a day finding out about the inventors on their doorstep and how they changed their world before exploring the whole of the museum, tracking down all the inventions to be found and discovering how they made money, saved time and made the world a different place.

Half day session

We have created a series of short films on this subject that can be used in the classroom. Follow this link to our YouTube Channel

Fossils KS2

Our session serves as an introduction to this fascinating topic. It starts by answering three questions – What is a fossil, how are they made and why are they important? The children get to handle a range of fossil animals and think about the environments the animals might have lived in.

Half day session

Printmaking KS2

This half-day workshop is a practical printmaking session, where the children make their very own prints inspired by the collections at the Museum. They will learn about traditional printmaking processes, learn the names of key printmaking tools, see a variety of different style prints and then have a go at making their own mono and lino print.

Half day session

Victorian Fossil Hunters KS1

An introduction to Victorian Fossil Hunters such as Mary Anning and their importance as pioneering palaeontologists; the children get to handle some fossils, make their own model fossil to take away and dress-up as Victorian fossil hunters.

Half day session

Bespoke Sessions

It may come as a surprise but almost half our sessions are effectively ‘one off’ devised in collaboration with a teacher to meet the requirements of their pupils. These have covered a wide range of topics and we are happy to work with teachers on the development of new sessions; one of our most popular outreach sessions came about as the result of one such request. Bespoke sessions can be whole or half-day sessions.

Please contact the Museum for a chat about your needs.

Self Guided Visits

If you want to visit the museum with a group but do not want a taught session, please contact us beforehand and we will help to facilitate your visit. This is to avoid multiple groups wanting to use the same gallery at the same time.