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Three more school visits

It’s been a busy fortnight here at SHARE with Schools! We’ve been out on trips to Cathays High, Woodlands High, and Michaelston Community College. Michaelston and Woodlands are part of the Ely and Caerau Federation, aka Westfed.

Volunteer coordinator Matt Vince on the Cathays visit:

Cathays visit – WW1 workshop

Last week myself, a handful of volunteers, and 40 secondary school pupils went on an adventure back in time. Back to the dreary times of World War 1 Cardiff. I must admit I was nervous. To me World War 1 is depressing – muddy boots, muddy bodies, and muddled tactics that caused both.

But through the workshop, and the stories of real life Cardiffians, World War 1 came to life before our eyes. The volunteers were absolutely incredible in this task, guiding the pupils through the artefacts in order to get at their underlying stories. From the Belgian ‘alien’ to the soldier on the Egyptian front, the pupils got to grips with the heritage of their area. Walking around the room and hearing stories from the pupil’s own families made this both incredibly relevant and exciting – tales of Grandfathers who were conscripted from Cathays where the school was, and Grandmothers who had shown the pupil’s letters from the front.

So a big thank you goes out to the volunteers who achieved this monumental task – bringing the past to life for the benefit of those in the present. It went so well that even the Ofsted inspector was impressed!

Thanks to:

  • Julia Rooke
  • Caitlin Fleming
  • Kieran Murphy
  • Clara Freer
  • Benjamin Dillon
  • Chris Parry

And coordinator Nick McDermot on the Woodlands trip:

On Tuesday SHARE with schools returned to Woodlands, to present 2 workshops. 19th Century Welsh life, thanks to artefacts provided by St Fagan’s natural history museum and Cardiff University conservation department. Also a unique workshop was presented by a group of students from Cardiff University’s Heritage and Communications module on Welsh myths and Legends.

Both workshops went very well and lead to some wonderful discussions of the difference between life in the 19th century and life today as well lots of artefact handling and examination.

A big thanks to the volunteers that made the day possible:

  • Charlotte Porter
  • Chris Parry
  • Daisy Atkins
  • Madeleine Moorcroft
  • Megan Keary
  • Alisha Chauhan

And finally a big thank you to Stephanie Hall and Caitlin Fleming who delivered at Michaelston yesterday with co-ordinators Kate Tinson and Kostas Trimmis and Dr Dave Wyatt. By all accounts it was an inspiring visit to Michaelston Community College in Ely, with 3 workshops delivered (2 x Life in 19th century Wales 1x Cardiff in WW1) to over 70 pupils in 3 hours. One of the school teachers said that “all the lessons seemed to go really well, the best I’ve seen our pupils engaged for a long time”! Here’s some images from the trip:

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Get Engaged! An Event to Inspire and Explore Public Engagement

The University Graduate College at Cardiff University kindly invited us to showcase the SHARE with Schools project at their Get Engaged! event on Wednesday.

Primarily “an event for research students interested in exploring how they might engage the public with their research, learning from experts and their peers”, we got to speak to some very interesting students, staff and members of other organisations. One of the keynote speakers was our very own Dr Dave Wyatt, who is also one of the drivers of the award-winning CAER Heritage Project.

More information about Engaged! An Event to Inspire and Explore Public Engagement here.

Read tweets about .

 

Return visits 11-13 June 2014

We had a very exciting and busy week last week, hosting return visits by pupils from Mountain Ash Comprehensive, Blaengwawr High and Cathays High. In a packed schedule they had tours of the department’s archaeology and conservation labs, of the special historic book collection SCOLAR, and interactive Medieval, Roman and Nineteenth Century sessions, as well as academic roadshows. In addition, each school also got a fantastic interactive talk from a different member of the faculty: our great thanks to Drs. Kate Gilliver, Jenny Benham and Muhammad Mansour Ali who lectured on decimation in the Roman army, Medieval outlawry and Qur’anic studies.

Thanks also to Chris Parry, Anna Field, Maria Healy and Luca Hoare for your fantastic help assisting with sessions and leading groups of school children around. A special well done for not losing any of them!

Postgraduate coordinator Melissa Julian-Jones has a great write up, concentrating on her development of the Medieval session. She has some great images of stuff produced by the visiting school pupils and information about a great game that you can play at home or with your friends (or frenemies) based on a genuine Medieval game.

I’ll get some more images up as soon as some permissions are sorted out. We have just one more return visit, with pupils from Fitzalan High School, next month to round out a fantastic year. Our side jobs (the project is run entirely by students at Cardiff University with fulltime work to be getting on with) won’t end there though as you can see us getting involved with various public and schools engagement projects throughout the summer. Information on these will be posted nearer the time.

https://twitter.com/BethRoseJenkins/status/475993380598861824

First trip to Willows High School

Some photos from our recent trip to Willows High School in Tremorfa, Cardiff, where we delivered our medieval and 19th century workshops. It was our first ever trip to Willows. We were delighted with some of the responses given and work that the groups produced, and especially impressed that the pupils stayed engaged with us for the two hours, each class having both workshops without a break. We look forwards to our second trip to the School, where we will be running our Romans workshop for the day.

I’ve been promised some more photos from the day and will get them up as soon as they are provided.

Fantastic feedback from Michaelston College pupils

We have just received some fantastic feedback from year 7 pupils at Michaelston College who took part in our ‘Romans in Wales’ workshop earlier today.

Here are some of their comments:

quotation-open‘The lesson about the Romans was amazing. It made me realise that I would like to go to Cardiff University to help the archaeologists when I am older. It was really fun and interesting. I find it amazing that artefacts from thousands of years ago are still around today and will probably survive for many more years. The lesson was very educational and my favourite artefacts were the sword, helmet and the bowl with the engravings on it. Thank you so much for teaching us about the Romans. I don’t think that there could be anything for you to improve on.’

quotation-open‘I found this lesson very enjoyable and educational, my favourite part was when we got to hold and feel the artefacts. I would’ve liked to see all the artefacts. It made me realise that I want to go to Cardiff University to study history…I really like the students because they were very kind and helpful.’

quotation-open‘I really liked our lesson on History and Archaeology it was so cool, I loved the clothes, helmet and the sword they were my favourite. The helmet was so heavy! It is so unbelievable that all of artefacts are over 2000+ years old! I can’t even imagine what it was like 2000 years ago! I would never want to go back in time. I didn’t realise how interesting Archaeology was! I think you have interested me enough for me to study Archaeology in University/College. We really liked you coming in and sharing all your stuff with us.’

Excellent job, SwS team! Enjoy some (blurry) photos from the workshops at Michaelston College as a treat.