The Dudley living history museum has transformed its former admissions building into a dedicated learning centre to be used exclusively by visiting schools.
The newly-refurbished learning space includes two classrooms, a lunch area and a gift shop, as well as providing an exclusive entrance and exit point for schools.
The museum’s overflow car park will also be available for the sole use of schools during term time, allowing easier access into the museum.
Now the facility is open, it will enable the West Midlands attraction to deliver more workshops and lessons in support of learners and increase its capacity to welcome even more educational groups.
Themes for each pre-bookable workshop vary depending on the Key Stage. Highlights include the chance for KS1 pupils to become ‘time travellers’ for the day, KS2 students can try their hand at being history detectives and guided visits for KS3 & 4 use enquiry-based learning to discover more about the history of the area.
Carol King, director of programmes at the museum, said: “As an educational charity, we value every single pupil who comes to visit us on a school trip to experience the history of the Black Country.
“Being able to provide a dedicated space to enhance their visit with workshops and sessions in new classrooms allows us to add value to the experience both for pupils and teachers.
“We’re thrilled with how the space has been transformed and we’re grateful to all our funders and supporters for enabling us to add this exciting new facility to the museum.”
A competition to create artwork for the walls of the space was opened at the beginning of the project. The winning artwork, from nearby Bramford Primary in Coseley, highlights the flames of industry from the Black Country’s past, with the bright orange and yellow accents extending throughout the design.
A class of 22 children from the school were invited to an exclusive preview of the space, as well as the opportunity to take part in a canal art craft session.
The learning space has been directly supported by two key funders – the Garfield Weston Foundation and the Clive Richards Foundation. The facility’s two classrooms have been named the Clive Richards Room and the Weston Room in acknowledgement of their support.
For more information about educational visits to the Black Country Living Museum, go to bclm.com/learn.