Learning at the Rural Life Centre
Come and experience Local Heritage across the South East
The Rural Life Centre is a countryside museum featuring exhibits from 1800 - 1950
Suggested areas of learning:
Alternatively a visit may be tailored to your specific needs, just discuss your ideas with the Education Officer.
Interested in making a visit?
How to Book:
1. Contact the voluntary Education Officer - 07771 526889 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to make a booking, or just to discuss possibilities.
2. If possible take advantage of a free pre-visit to discuss the day or just see the museum.
• £5.50 for each child,
• Accompanying adults are free,
• Workshops & demonstrations are £15 per class (2 or 3 are recommended),
• Loan Boxes £20 per 3 week hire + £10 returnable deposit.
Workshops and demonstrations for Key Stages I & II
Tailored to your study period
Please ask for Curriculum links and ideas
- Traditional farming through the ages
The work of a typical farmer's boy during the farming year is explained through an interactive talk. It provides plenty of opportunity to handle artefacts and discover how they were used and learn about food production.
- Country childhood: choose from 1800-1950
How did the country child live? Find out about their hardships and health. Discover a way of life very different from ours today. The workshop includes "hands on" experience and role play.
- Bygone school: choose from 1850-1950
Attend a lesson taught by a strict school teacher, using slates, pen and ink and other items as appropriate. This session takes place in the period schoolroom.
- Experience Monday Washday
Join in with a practical session that involves washing with old fashioned equipment, such as carbolic soap, tin baths and wash boards. Fetch water from the pump and do your own washing as a small group activity.
- Housework before electricity
Housework has changed dramatically. Discover the jobs that were done and what equipment was used. This workshop uses a collection of artefacts and provides the opportunity to "have a go".
- The Wheelwright: a local craftsman
Listen to the wheelwright and learn how a wheel is made. Finish the workshop by working together to make a large waggon wheel
- Up, up and away: pulleys and levers
Investigate how levers, ropes and pulleys were used to move loads.
- How we travelled
Learn about the development of transport, from cart to car and cycle. The session includes a guided walk to study the museum's vehicles. Maybe follow the workshop with a sketching activity?
- Animals in the Great War
Animals had an important role in the war. Learn about the different animals used and what they did. An illustrated talk.
- Stories of the Home Guard
In World War II the Home Guard contributed to home defence. Find out what they did, go inside a Morrison shelter and have a go with the stirrup pump.
- Tweedsmuir: a Polish resettlement camp.
Hear the story of a child who lived in the Tweedsmuir camp after the Second World War. Find out why the settlement camps were needed and what the people who lived there did, from a person with first hand experience of Tweedsmuir.
- Make do and mend
This workshop tells of shortages during WWII and how people overcame these difficulties by making and mending. There is plenty of opportunity for taking part and joining in.
- A Schoolboy during WW II
Listen to wartime memories, told by a Volunteer who was a young boy during the Second World War. He shares his experiences of school and home.
We will be happy to welcome Key Stage III & IV students. Please discuss your particular subject or cross-curricular requirements with the Education Officer.
General Visit information
- Schools may book a visit on any day of the week.
- Only one school will be booked at the museum on any one day.
- A museum volunteer will "meet and greet" each group and be on hand to assist, but not lead the group.
- Visiting schools will have a designated indoor area to leave bags (not valuables) etc. This may be used for lunch if needed — otherwise there are plenty of outdoor picnic areas.
- The museum has ample parking.
- Workshops & demonstrations may be booked at the extra charge of £15 per workshop per class, subject to the availability of volunteers.
- Group charges are £5.50 for children. Accompanying adults and the coach driver are admitted free.
Dressing Up Clothes and Period Toys
- Dressing up clothes are available for use while at the museum. Please enquire at the time of booking.
- Period toys are available for use at playtimes and lunch time.
- Loan boxes, to support the workshops, are available for use in school before, or after the visit, or as a "stand alone" resource. The charge is £20 for a three week period, plus a returnable deposit.
- The museum shop stocks many pocket money items. It is available during normal opening hours; otherwise it may sometimes be opened by special arrangement.
- Alternatively groups may order "goodie bags" which are paid for in advance and collected on the day.
- To make the appropriate "Health and Safety" assessment before their visit. All workshops are fully risk assessed.
- Sufficient adults should accompany the group, as recommended by local authority guidelines.
- Teachers will be responsible for the behaviour and any special needs of their pupils.
We hope to welcome you to the Rural Life Centre!
Please don't forget to book by contacting the Education Officer at email@example.com or call 077715 26889