School trips round-up: the Geffrye Museum, plus other top period houses and gardens

By Rachel Hayward | 11 March 2010 | Updated: 04 April 2011
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Experience a hands-on exploration of the past. The Geffrye Museum in London is an ideal venue to explore period houses and gardens. All photos courtesy the Geffrye Museum

Go visit: whether you're teaching the Tudors or the Victorians, if you take your class to a period house and garden, you and your pupils will enjoy a fuller picture of what life was like then.

There are so many historic house and garden venues round the country that cater for school visits. Sessions offered are cross-curricular, often free or at a minimum cost, and with prior discussion with the venue's education team, can sometimes be adapted to your specific topic requirements.

You can do a quick search for UK historic houses and gardens on Culture24, try our Places to Go map, or if you know the name of a particular venue, why not have a look for more info via our Search box at the top right hand corner of the screen?

Culture24 highly recommends…
A true gem in the heart of the East End, The Geffrye Museum deserves its status as one of London's best-loved museums. It's down to a winning combination of fantastic venue and wonderful education team led by Alison Lightbown.

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Here's a peek of what's awaiting you at the Geffrye Museum. This is the Regency room.

The Geffrye Museum, which comprises of a row of former almshouses, contemporary wing and period gardens, gives you the best of all worlds - inside and out.

You can literally walk through time as you pass through specially themed rooms ranging from the 17th century with oak furniture and panelling, past the refined splendour of the Georgian period and the high style of the Victorians, to 20th century modernity as seen in a 1930s flat, a mid-century room in 'contemporary style' and a late-20th century living space in a converted warehouse.

Showing a group of primary aged children displaying their handiwork at the Geffrye Museum.

Showing children enjoying cross-curricular activities at the Geffrye Museum.

All sessions include a practical, hands-on element and the Museum caters for primary aged children and upwards.

Activities for young children include favourites such as the Tudors and Victorians but you'll also find Art & Design and Storytelling available. For a full list for primary schools, please check out the Primary Schools' sessions on the Geffrye Museum website.

Showing two primary aged girls sketching in a garden

The Geffrye Museum's gardens include an award-winning walled herb garden and a series of period gardens, so if you make a visit to the museum, your school group can also take part in curriculum-related activities outside too.

Secondary schools can choose from Art & Design, English, Design & Technology, History and the Creative & Media Diploma. Find out more about Secondary and post-16 sessions on the Geffrye Museum's website.

Showing a woman and two teenage boys standing in front of a tree and holding some artwork

Emma Dunn, Geffrye Museum Education Officer for Schools and Formal Learning, with students Matt and Alpha.

For up-to-date information on all the high quality educational activities at the Geffrye Museum, please visit the Geffrye Museum's Learning section.

There are also online resources - once you click on the link, scroll down the page to Online programmes.

More on the venues and organisations we've mentioned: