On Friday 22nd November 2013, Burgh House & Hampstead Museum took part in our first ever Takeover Day. Organised by Kids in Museums, Takeover Day gives children the opportunity to go behind the scenes of museums, galleries and historic houses and run the place for the day. We decided to take part in order to help build relationships with local schools and to get children excited about Hampstead Museum and museums in general. One of the things we hoped to gain from the day was a new Family Trail for the Museum which would be written by children, for children.
During the afternoon, the pupils:
- Welcomed visitors and ran the shop
- Wrote new labels for some of objects on display in Hampstead Museum
- Cleaned the Museum and objects
- Planned and led guided tours around the House and Museum
- Researched the history of Burgh House and wrote questions for the new Family Trail
- Created some wonderful artwork based on Burgh House and its former inhabitants
The day was a great success and all of the children (and the staff!) enjoyed themselves immensely. Some of the children said that they especially liked being able to look at and handle the objects in Hampstead Museum which linked directly to their curriculum, such as the Second World War helmets.
As a thank you, the children made us a beautiful advent calendar based on photographs they had taken of Burgh House. Each flap reveals a different question about the house that the children wrote themselves.
On the right, you will find a gallery of some photographs of their wonderful artwork and object labels on display in Hampstead Museum. You can also download Kids in Museums’ Burgh House case study.
We hope to make Takeover Day an annual event at Burgh House!
Kids in Museums is an organisation which strives to give children and families visiting cultural institutions a voice. Every year, they orchestrate Take Over Day, during which museums, galleries and historic houses open their doors to children and allow them the opportunity to run the place for a day.