Using museums and artefacts

Primary History article

By Scott Harrison, Richard Woff, published 31st May 2004

Please note: this article pre-dates the current National Curriculum and some content may be outdated.

Over several years of reporting on primary history, the use of museums and artefacts has been identified in Ofsted reports as an issue for schools to address. Although there is now far greater expertise in these areas than in the past, it is still the case that in many schools artefacts are merely decorative, and that many school visits to sites and museums, costly though they are in time, energy and ‘parental contributions’, fail to justify themselves in their educational use. In February 2003 an Ofsted invitation conference was held at the British Museum. Most of the teachers who attended were subject leaders in primary schools. The full report of the conference can still be found on the Ofsted website, and includes both Ofsted findings and a section on the role of history coordinators. However, the main part of the conference was dedicated to learning in a museums context, both from artefacts and in galleries. This short article distils the main messages from that report.

This resource is FREE for Primary HA Members.

Non HA Members can get instant access for £2.75

Add to Basket Join the HA