Warwickshire Museum in your home (#museumfromhome)

Life has changed for everyone this year due to coronavirus (we can’t seem to escape it). With it, we have seen the closure of lots of different places we’d usually visit during the long summer holidays such as libraries and museums. Market Hall Museum (Warwickshire Museum) in Warwick is no different and had to close for a few months. Now they have adapted to the ‘new normal’ with some exciting new initiatives such as pre-booked visits and the exciting #museumfromhome offering.

What is Warwickshire Museum #museumfromhome?

Warwickshire Museum explain “You can’t come to our events so we’re bringing a taste of them to you.” You can visit their page for weekly posts of activities that you can do at home from their past events and activities at the museum. There will also be a weekly post from their Arty Tots team for activities suitable for the under 5’s.”

Hours of Entertainment

Just like a normal summer, the task of filling the school holidays with things to do remains the same. Warwickshire Museum have had their thinking caps on and, as well as providing many online downloads, they have been offering – wait for this – goody bags of activities you can take home with you!

Each pack is themed and contains an instruction pack and all the craft materials you need for the activities. There’s even nifty YouTube instructional videos to show you what you need to do. Perfect! (Can you tell I’ve been enjoying this as well as my daughter!)

Click and Collect – Museum style!

Forget the supermarket slot, this click and collect is definitely one to look forward to. Follow Heritage and Culture Warwickshire on your favourite social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube). Then, you will find out, usually on a Monday what pack will be available each week.

You book a timeslot via Eventbrite and then turn up at the museum on your allotted date and time to pick up your bag. There are lots of slots available, and we’ve never had a problem with booking. When you turn up at the museum, you wait at the front door where one of the museum staff greet you (at a safe social distance of course). The staff hand you your bag and away you go home to enjoy all that the #museumfromhome packs have to offer.

What have we enjoyed so far?

So far, we have collected four different packs. All very different and all very much appreciated and enjoyed. Each bag contains an information booklet and all the materials you need to get stuck in. Our favourite activities have been going on a bug hunt (complete with a bug collection box and sheet to tick what we have spotted) and making our very own rainbowfish. The rainbowfish even reminded us of a delightful show we saw at Warwickshire libraries last year!

The packs we’ve had are as follows:

Amazing Archaeology

Activities include: Hand stencil cave painting, waffle and daub wall, make your own crop marks cress seeds and make anglo-saxon flatbread.

Marvellous Mini Beasts

Activities include: A bug hotel, minibeast hunt, seed bombs and make your own wooden bug magnet.

Victorian Summer

Make your own peg doll, create a craniotype print, host your own museum with a cabinet of curiosities, refresh yourself with victorian lemonade and put on a Punch and Judy show!

Arty Tots Activity Pack

This one is a bumper pack to last the entire summer, mostly aimed at younger children and includes:

  • Jimmy The Bear – bear stick puppet, songs about bears, raft building.
  • The Kenilworth Cob – swan collage, fox puppet and a decoupage swan.
  •  Maisie the Ichthyosaur – make your own maisie, make your own fossil, a fun icthyosaur game, songs about dinosaurs, and rainbow weaving fish.
  • Mission Beeimpossible – bee finger puppet, honey biscuits, rhymes about bees, hanging bee decoration

Every day’s a school day (even in the holidays)

We have learned so much together from the fact sheets in the activity pack. Here are a selection of the key facts that we have discovered:

  • An adult male swan is called a cob and an adult female is called a pen. A swan can fly up to 30 miles an hour!
  • To make a pound of honey, a bee would have to fly over 90,000 miles. That is up to three times around the world.
  • Warwickshire was once covered by a warm shallow sea where ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs lived happily.
  • Grasshoppers existed before dinosaurs.

Lots of ideas for entertainment

There are lots of ideas in these packs to entertain the kids (and not a screen in sight). We have got through quite a few of the activities, but there are still many more to do. This is useful especially with the weather now either too hot to go out or too rainy! These packs are perfect additions to indoor play activities you can do at home.

The packs are educational, entertaining and fun. They will bring out your child’s creative side whilst at the same time giving them something worthwhile to do. You can even add them to your home schooling resources. Why not check a pack out for yourselves? If you are going to the museum to collect your pack, note that you can also booked a timed slot too for going inside. We did this recently to catch up with the bees who we have missed during lockdown!

Have you got yours?

Has your child been enjoying the pack? Let us know what you’ve had fun making by using the comments box below or by joining in the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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