Hi, my name is Sz-Yu and as part of my MA in Museum Studies at Leicester University I’ve just completed an 8-week learning placement at the Charterhouse. As a Museum Studies student with a passion for history, I enjoyed my time working to develop the connection between this fascinating heritage site and its varied audience.
At the start of my placement I focused on creating schools’ resources connected to our programme for primary and secondary schools. I was tasked with creating downloadable resource packs for teachers linked to three key areas: the Tudors, Queen Elizabeth I, and the Black Death. For each pack, I created a chronological timeline that connected and compared the history of the Charterhouse with the history of England. The packs then contained a welcoming teacher’s note, session ideas, images and class room activities.
Throughout my placement, I worked closely with the Learning Programme Manager, Cynthia, to come up with creative learning activities that would inspire curiosity about the people who had lived, worked and studied at the Charterhouse. As a history undergraduate in Taiwan, I learnt about the English Reformation, a key story in the Charterhouse story, and I was able to use that knowledge to bring such topics to life. For me, a good museum or heritage site does not teach people, but encourages them to think.
Towards the end of my placement I moved onto creating self-guided family resources (an initial challenge since I am not good at art!) I learnt a lot in this process, including how to choose a theme that is fun and interesting for all the family. I came up with a Coat of Arms activity connected to the 4th Duke of Norfolk, who once owned the Charterhouse, and two easy Tudor crafts for families to make and take. I also helped deliver a few of our new Family Friday workshops over Summer. At our August Mini Weavers workshop I helped families weave their own mini heraldic banners.
I also did a lot of comparator research looking at the learning newsletters, family offer and teachers’ network programmes at other institutions. This offered real insight into the marketing methods and content being used by different cultural institutions.
It was a great pleasure to enjoy such an inspiring placement at the Charterhouse this Summer.