Hello, my name is Alice and I go to North Berwick High School. I have chosen to go to East Lothian Museums Service for my work experience week. For those who don’t know, a work placement is a requirement for Scottish schools which means that pupils must choose a place to work for a week (this can be from a list of places the schools have selected, or a pupil can find their own). I’ve only been here for one day, and I’ve already seen a lot of what happens behind the scenes of museums. I had no idea how much organisation was needed to sort everything out, or how many artefacts get donated to museums, especially just by members of the public. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the week, as I’m already fascinated by what I’ve seen just in one day!
I chose to go to the East Lothian Museums Service for my work placement as I’ve always loved history, even when I was little I was always fascinated by history programs and books. I have also enjoyed going to museums, I love how they make you feel like you’re really in the 60’s, or in the middle of a jungle, or anywhere in the world! I also love working with children, so I’m glad I get to follow Sarah around, as I’ll get a chance to work with younger children and set up displays for them to explore. I was also curious about exactly what happens behind the closed doors of museums, and I was blown away when I saw the store room which was full of artefacts and old
paintings. I had no idea how many precautions had to be taken with old pieces of bowls and helmets, etc. Many things were wrapped in acid-free tissue paper, along with acid-free boxes. The store was also set at a specific temperature and humidity to stop anything corroding or breaking. This also meant that no natural light could enter the room, so there were no windows in the store. Everything was so thought-through and careful it makes you appreciate how old some of these antiques you see in museums really are. I was lucky enough to be able to unwrap an old football made from leather from the archives and physically touch it (with gloves-just in case), it was weird knowing that someone as old as one hundred now might have played with that football!
The rest of the week sounds really exciting. I will be going to East Coast FM with Sarah to talk about upcoming events as well as maybe talking about my work placement. I will also be making a World War One box for schools for if they are doing a project and need some resources as an ongoing project for the week. On Wednesday I will be going to Glasgow with a primary school, which will be great fun as I’ll learn more about history and museums whilst working with younger children and going on a trip! This will be a long day but I’m really looking forward to it. The next day I will be going to another primary school to help with a workshop on making a museum on World War Two. This will be really good fun as I’m still learning, but I get to do something creative and help give people ideas on displays. World War Two is also one of my favourite time periods to learn about, so I’m looking forward to seeing what the children have already learnt. In the week I will also be setting up a kid’s corner at Prestongrange, so that children can get hands on with the museum and feel like they are a part of it. In addition to this, I will also be photographing my week and everything we do! I’m really looking forward to the rest of my week and I can’t wait to see all the exciting things that the museums and schools have to offer.
I’m really happy I chose to come to the East Lothian Museum Service for my work experience week as I’ve already had an amazing time and I’ve only been here for one day! I can’t wait to learn more about how the museums system works and learn more about history, especially world war one, which I have just completed in school and I found really fascinating. Overall, today has been really good and I can’t wait for the rest of the week!
I really enjoyed reading Alice Kerr’s enthusiastic account of her work placement, she made it sound so interesting and fun. My husband says he probably played with that football! Well done, M. Laws