The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery

As part of our local history study of the Staffordshire Hoard, the children in Class 3 visited The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery. Prior to the visit, the children had explored the website and the information about the hoard. They were very excited to get a more hands on approach, especially when they found out they would get the chance to do some metal detecting! As ever, the children were very well behaved and many members of staff commented on their polite manner.

When we first arrived, the children were rather taken with a large statue...

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Our visit began with a wander around the museum, stopping at various points before moving on to our workshop.

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Our first workshop was made up of three activities. The first was metal detecting. Some children needed to be reminded that there were two ends of a metal detector… However, after a few near head misses, they managed to get the hang of it to find a range of 'treasure' and 'rubbish.

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The second activity got a little competitive as the children wanted to see if they could be the first to complete each piece of pottery. The children really got involved in this as they enjoyed trying to piece the bits together like a jigsaw. Many of the children thought they would make excellent archaeologists!

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The final activity involved digging through layers of sand to find different artefacts. The children felt like real archaeologists doing this! While some children managed to date some of the objects using the evidence provided, all children were able to order the objects from oldest to newest. They found that the newer items were close to the surface and that the deeper they went, the older the objects became.

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After lunch, the children then got to explore the Staffordshire Hoard. They recognised many of the artefacts from our previous study (and they were amazed with just how many items were available). 

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They finished the session making their own Anglo Saxon helmets (which I'm sure you have already seen). The children used their knowledge of the designs within the hoard to make their own. They were also especially excited to hear that the Anglo Saxons could have an army made up of as few as 30 people. Some of them really were quite terrifying...

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Characteristics of a Historian

• Use evidence to ask questions and find answers to questions about the past.

• Use more than one source of evidence for historical enquiry in order to gain a more accurate understanding of history.

• Describe changes that have happened in the locality of the school throughout history.

• Understand the concept of change over time, representing this, along with evidence, on a time line.

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"We learned about how archaeologists dug up artefacts. We also found out that things get older the deeper down you dig!" Christi

"We learnt lots of things. We learnt about helmet designs, metal detection and how to create our own archealogist site!" - Jake

"I liked the trip a lot because we got to apply all the different things we had learn. It was interesting to see the Staffordshire Hoard in person," - Finlay

“I really liked making the helmet!” - Poppy