Posts Tagged ‘Schools’

Object of the Week: Egyptian Scarab Amulet

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

This Egyptian Scarab amulet is around 4000 years old and was made to be worn as a necklace of brooch across someone’s chest.


In ancient Egyptian religion, the sun god Ra is seen to roll across the sky each day, transforming bodies and souls. Beetles of of the Scarabaeidae family (dung beetle) roll dung into a ball as food and as a brood chamber in which to lay eggs that are later transformed into larvae. For these reasons the scarab was seen as a symbol of this heavenly cycle and of the idea of rebirth or regeneration.

PP1 Polly and William Carter 14.4.15

Some of our visitors have been making their own Scarab amulets this week as well as adding to our wonderful Egyptian mural! There’s one more day of activities so if you haven’t visited us so far this Easter don’t miss out!

This week’s events

Inspired by Bickerton closes on Saturday so if you haven’t been in to see the competition entries or Bickerton’s own photographs this is your last chance!

We have a Stores Open Day coming up on Saturday 9th May. If you want a chance to see behind the scenes at the museum then put the date in your diary and keep an eye on our website for more information!

Teachers don’t forget out new Learning Officer Jo Marychurch has now started so get in touch with her to book any visits or for any other help/ideas! All of our current workshops and loans boxes are on our website so take a look and get booking!

Object of the week: Votes for Women sash

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Today’s object of the week is chosen by Learning Officer Eleanor Payne who we are sadly saying goodbye to today! Eleanor will be starting her new job at the Women’s Library in the London School of Economics next week and in honour of that she has chosen this wonderful Votes for Women sash.


Eleanor has been with Hertford Museum for 7 years working with local schools, uniformed organisations, adult groups and also organising all of our family activities for school holidays.


We’ll have news about our new Learning Officer in our Summer Newsletter so keep an eye out for that. If you have any questions about our schools programme or other learning opportunities in the meantime please contact the main museum number (01992 582686) or email ( and we’ll do our best to help you.

Escape the weather at Hertford Museum this Half Term!

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

We hope you’re all staying safe and dry in this horrible weather- to make sure you’re not going completely crazy whilst stuck in doors there’s LOTS to do at the museum over the next couple of weeks. Today our Learning Officer Eleanor has been working with several other local museums on how we can support schools with the new National Curriculum meanwhile staff from Tring Natural History Museum have been visiting us (and helping us identify some mystery birds in our collections!)

2014-02 Tring staff visit

Tomorrow is a Knit & Natter Thursday where anyone can drop in with their knitting (or crocheting!) and joing our friendly group of a cup of tea and a chat. Then on Friday it’s the Hertford Country Market where you can pick up lots of goodies to cheer yourself up.


Then on Saturday, as a special Half Term treat (and back by popular demand!) we’re having another Spirit of the Wild day as part of our World of Wallace exhibition! The day runs from 10.30am – 3.30pm but there are free timed entry slots which will be allocated on the day on a first come first served basis. Come and wonder at an array of amazing creatures from around the world with Spirit of the Wild, generously supported by Arts Council England.


Then for Half Term itself the museum is going to become home to Excellent Explorers! From Tuesday 18th – Thursday 20th February there will be family craft activities inspired by intrepid explorers like Dora & Diego (as well as Alfred Russel Wallace himself!). Sessions run from 10.30 am – 3.30 pm and cost £1.50 per child. Dor herself might be making an appearence during the week too so keep an eye out for her!


Countdown to World of Wallace

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

Our World of Wallace exhibition opens in just 10 days time so we’re all very busy at the moment making sure that everything is ready in time! For this week’s blog we thought we’d give you an idea of all of the different things that need to come together when we put on an exhibition.

Firstly after months of research we’ve written all of the text panels and our wonderful designer, Nigel at M Star Graphics, has put the text and images together and now we’re just waiting for the finished panels from the printer.

Portrait of Alfred Russel Wallace with a Bird of Paradise specimen

Portrait of Alfred Russel Wallace with a Bird of Paradise specimen.

We’re using a lot of natural history objects from our collection for this exhibition and so we’ve had teams of volunteers cleaning some of them whilst the more fragile specimens have gone away to be looked after by professional conservators and the final few objects are being returned this week.

Conservator Juliane Ovenden working on some of our Natural History collection.

Conservator Juliane Ovenden working on some of our Natural History collection.

It’s not just our own objects in this exhibition though, we’re receiving loans from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, the Natural History Museum, the Oxford University Museum of Natural History, the Museum of the History of Science, the Royal Entomological Society and the University of Cambridge Museum of Zoology! All of these loans have to be collected, brought back to the museum and carefully checked to make sure we know what condition they are in.

One of the loans from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew- a plant specimen collected by Alfred Russel Wallace himself.

One of the loans from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew- a plant specimen collected by Alfred Russel Wallace himself.

In the exhibition there will also be some fantastic interactive elements for our younger visitors and these have had to be designed, artwork drawn for them, instructions written and they should be arriving at the museum any day now.

Some pieces from our "Design your own Bird of Paradise" interactive drawn for us by Joanna Scott.

Some pieces from our “Design your own Bird of Paradise” interactive drawn for us by Joanna Scott.

Then alongside all of that we have to plan for our preview (if you want to come to a museum preview you need to join the Friends or Patrons!), organise all of the events running alongside the exhibition (like Spirit of the Wild on Saturday 26th October and our Half Term Big Draw activities!), there’s special Wallace themed merchandise to design and order (we can be a one stop shop for all your Christmas presents this year!) and after all of that we’re also launching two new Schools’ Workshops which will be available during and after the exhibition.

A Rhinoceros Hornbill drawn by Alfred Russel Wallace. This is one of the images we're using on our World of Wallace mugs!

A Rhinoceros Hornbill drawn by Alfred Russel Wallace. This is one of the images we’re using on our World of Wallace mugs!

If you like hearing about what goes on behind the scenes at the museum make sure you’ve check out our World of Wallace videos and subscribe to our YouTube channel to make sure you don’t miss any future videos!

New School Term and New Schools Sessions!

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

It’s hard to believe it’s already October and the Autumn term is in full swing but we’ve already had lots of school visits this year and our Learning Officer, Eleanor, has taken some of our sessions out to other schools!

Little Heath Toys 27-9-13 (10)

If you visit the museum during the week you’ll often see schools in our galleries, garden or doing workshops in the Andrews Room and to keep all the local teachers up-to-date on our current sessions we have a special Schools Newsletter which comes out at the start of each term.

Little Heath Toys 27-9-13 (1)

This Autumn our newsletter includes some details about our brand new Natural History workshops. We’re really excited to be able to use our Natural History collections with schools this year and we have two new sessions both supported by Arts Council England as part of our World of Wallace project.

Simon Balle Summer School 19-8-13 (13)

From November schools can book a session called An Animal Gathering, all about how different animals and species adapt and change depending on their habitats, or Who Was Wallace, all about Alfred Russel Wallace’s adventures and discoveries.

rhinoceros hornbill- ARW

For more details you can always see the Schools section of our website and at the moment there is a special World of Wallace Schools page as well.

Remembrance Day

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

The Poppies that are appearing on coats, jackets and jumpers everywhere mean that it’s almost time for Remembrance Day. Hertford Museum holds the official Hertfordshire Regiment collection and so this is an important time of year for us.

This year we’ve put together a small display of some of our First and Second World War objects including the beautiful embroidered postcards soldiers sent home from France alongside a bayonet and an army medical kit.

Simon Balle students learning about Corporal Burt

Our Learning Officer Eleanor does a lot of work with schools at this time of year running special sessions about Remembrance Day and some of our local soldiers.

School children learn about Remembrance Day, the Poppies and War memorials as well as hearing some of the stories and experiences of soldiers from the Hertfordshire Regiment. Two of the stories Eleanor always talks about are those of Corporal A Burt and Lieutenant F.E. Young who both received the Victoria Cross for their extreme bravery in battle.

The Hertford War Memorial on Remembrance Day 1921

Why not take time in the next week to visit the museum and discover some of the stories of local men caught up in the fighting before visiting the Hertford War Memorial on Sunday morning for the annual service of remembrance?

The Remembrance Parade will arrive at the War Memorial in Parliament Square at 10:45am for wreath-laying and the two minute silence. This will be followed by a service at All Saints Church in Churchfields.

Hertford Carnival- Sunday 24th June 2012

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Is everyone ready for the Carnival on Sunday?

Hertford Museum is putting together a float for the Carnival procession. We’ve worked with lots of different groups and schools to make some incredible models of objects from our collection and they’re all finished now ready to be put together on Sunday morning.

Thank you to Richard Hale, Hollybush. Mill Mead, Bengeo Primary School, Hertford Heath Primary School, Selections Children’s Centre, Stapleford School and Morgans for all their help in putting the models together as well as to the fantastic volunteers at the museum!

It’s the first time there’s been a Carnival in Hertford for more than 10 years so we’ve dug out some pictures of previous carnivals from our collections to share with you:

If you want to know all the details about Carnival day then take a look at the Hertford Carnival website.

We’ll be taking part in the procession at 2pm, having a stall in the Castle Grounds all day AND the Museum itself will be open from 1pm-5pm with Afternoon Teas being served in the garden and a Model Railway Day as well!

An ordinary day at Hertford Museum

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

We like to keep busy at Hertford Museum and today has been particularly full!

This morning our Curator, Sara, was out buying bookshelves for our new library at our Stores. We’ve cleaned out the room that is going to become the library and carpeted it but now we need shelves to house all the books! If you come along to our Open Stores Day on Saturday 14th July you’ll be able to see how far along our plans are!

Our old Library- you can see why it needed more space and more shelves!

While she was doing that Assistant Curator Sarah was at a meeting of the Hertfordshire Museums Group where we share ideas and news with other local museums. This meeting also involved lots of presentations on projects funded by the Hertfordshire Museums Partnership Small Grant Scheme- our project was updating Modes, the computer programme we use to document our collections, and training our volunteers to use it.

St Catherines School, Hoddesdon, playing with the toys in one of our loans boxes

Our Learning Officer Eleanor has been talking to schools today about our loans boxes- these are themed boxes of objects that schools can borrow to use in their classrooms. We have several on themes including Beside the Seaside, Toys of the Past & Egyptians and we are now involved in a project to research how schools make use of them.

And everyone else has been busy too. Connie our Finance Officer has been updating our accounts whilst our Museum Support Assistants, Julie & Holly, have been looking after the shop and the front desk and answering enquiries (you can read about the kinds of things we get asked in this post from February) and in the garden Alison is clipping the box hedges that make up our knot garden- it’s looking beautiful and green at the moment after all that rain!

The museum knot garden two years ago, visit us to see how much it's grown!

And after all of that this afternoon we’ve been discussing an exhibition we’ll be holding next year on Bengeo! We’ll talk more about the exhibition much nearer the time but we’ve got lots of ideas already.

Hertford Carnival- thank you & a sneak peek

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

Thank you to everyone who dropped a green token (or 6) into our box at Waitrose last month. We raised a wonderful £470 which will all go towards our float for the Hertford Carnival and the work we are doing with local schools for it.

As a big thank you here are some pictures of our hardworking staff & volunteers putting together the bases of our giant objects ready for them to go out to our school partners to be built up and decorated!

Can you guess what any of these are going to become?

First steps towards our Carnival float
First steps towards our Carnival float
First steps towards our Carnival float

Waitrose Community Matters & the Hertford Carnival

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

If any of you have been into the Hertford branch of Waitrose in the last week you may have noticed that Hertford Museum is one of the three charities in their Community Matters scheme this month.

Each month Waitrose have £1000 to give away and they split it between three charities but how much we each get depends on how many green tokens shoppers put into our box so PLEASE collect your token at the till and add it to our box.

Any money we are given by Waitrose will be going towards our Carnival float for this year’s Hertford Carnival in June. We’ve got big plans to decorate our float- we’re hoping to make giant models of some of the objects from our collection- like our Samurai and maybe an ENORMOUS toothbrush.

But we won’t be making them alone- we’re working with lots of local schools who will each take on a different model. The schools taking part are:

  • Bengeo Primary School

  • Hollybush Primary School
  • Richard Hale School
  • The Sele School
  • Morgans Primary School
  • Hertford Heath School
  • Hertford Selections Children’s Centre

So your Waitrose token in our box will help all of those schools as well as us AND you’ll be able to enjoy wha we create at the the Hertford Carnival on Sunday 24th June 2012