Science on timetable at Fort Nelson - Friday, 12 March 2010

The Royal Armouries (RA) has secured a £3,000 grant to help put science on the timetable at historic Fort Nelson.

The grant – from the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council – will be used to help develop a stimulating programme of science sessions at the Victorian fort, as part of the RA’s newly extended education programme.

Learning and Outreach Manager-South Mandy Martin-Smith said “ I was delighted to receive this grant as it allows us to extend the Royal Armouries Science project which has been running for seven years, but primarily based at the Tower of London”.

The funds will allow the Fort to work in partnership with a number of schools, colleges and universities, including Southampton University students studying for Post Graduate Certificates in Education.

As part of its work to mark National Science Week, the Fort’s education team will host two sessions for two secondary schools – Brune Park Community College in Gosport (March 15) and Oaklands RC School in Waterlooville (March 16).

Year Seven pupils, joined by Year Six pupils from primary schools that “feed into” these two secondary schools, will visit the Fort museum, home to the national collection of arms and armour. They will also participate in Eggstreme Armour sessions, looking at materials and their properties.

Fort education officer Amy Preece said, “We will encourage students to think about Fort Nelson’s artillery collection and about self-protection issues and how they can safeguard themselves against weapons.

“By looking at modern and historic body protection we will develop scientific vocabulary and an understanding of materials. To help put this all into context, students will then design, make and test body protection for an egg.”

As Britain’s oldest museum, the RA aims to boost the falling numbers of youngsters choosing to study science subjects, by exciting curiosity about the subject. It hopes this will tackle the falling numbers of young men and women who choose to study Physics and Chemistry at A Level, paving the way for science-based careers such as engineering.

The grant is just the beginning of the education team’s science provision at the Fort. During this month’s initial trials, the team will work with almost 200 students – allow them to plan and develop science sessions for the future.

The RA has also joined the Science Links in Museum Education (SLIME) – a network of museum and organisations in the South East, who promote and support science for school age children and other visitors.

…ENDS…

Notes to editors

Media contact

Joss Loader
Primary PR Ltd.
Tel: 07838 379599
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