A Museum in a Classroom: handy how to guide

By Rachel Hayward | 10 August 2009
Showing a primary school pupil standing in front of the school museum in the classroom

(Above) A pupil at Briscoe Primary School in Essex at the launch of their museum in the classroom (2006). Pic © Jane Branson / Culture24

Displays are great ways of showcasing pupils' work, but how about a museum in your classroom?

There's a handy resource for teachers to help guide you through setting up just such a project.

Designed by Michael Munday and written by educational consultant, Elizabeth Newbery, A Museum in the Classroom introduces primary school teachers and children to the idea of collecting, how museums look after and display objects, and how they can put together their own temporary displays in the classroom on a variety of themes.

You will find helpful background information on why people collect, what they collect and how they bring together a collection. Then A Museum in the Classroom takes you through a practical step-by-step guide to setting up your museum collection. There are sections on identifying, classifying and recording objects, as well as labelling tips and advice on how to care for and display the collection.

The pack was produced in 2000 by The Campaign for Museums so does not contain up-to-date national curriculum details but the cross-curricular examples are still useful.

Showing a primary school pupil standing in front of a display that is part of the museum in the classroom

(Above) Another pupil at Briscoe Primary School in Essex examines the display, part of the project museum in the classroom, 2006. Pic © Jane Branson / Culture24

How about getting in touch with your local museum to see if they will partner you in your project?

The Royal Engineers Museum and Kent Police Museum supported St Mary's Island Primary in creating a mini museum within the school. Find out more in our Culture24 article: Royal Engineers Museum helps school produce history of Chatham Island

Download the Museum in the Classroom resource.

More on the venues and organisations we've mentioned: