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Workshops

Available at both sites. Experience an interactive, hands-on learning experience focused on STEM, Social Studies and Expressive Arts inspired by objects and stories from our collection. Workshops are available to be booked on demand.

Early/First Level

How the Pirates Turned the Tide, P2 – P4 (1 hour)
Ahoy landlubbers! Based on the wonderful new picture book by local author Greta Yorke, pupils will investigate recycling and keeping our oceans clean, all with a piratey theme! Arrgh!
TCH 1-06a, TCH 1-10a, SCN 1-15a / TCH 2-06a, TCH 2-10a

Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch, Nursery – P3 (1 hour – 75 minutes)
Our most popular early primary workshop based on the book by Ronda and David Armitage. Join Mr and Mrs Grindling and try to keep today’s lunch away from those pesky seagulls! Join Mr and Mrs Grindling to try and keep today’s lunch away from those pesky seagulls and build your own giant lighthouse as a class!
EXA 0-02a, LIT 0-04a, TCH 0-10a / EXA 1-02a, LIT 1-04a, SCN 1-07a, TCH 1-10a

Katie Morag and Island Life, P1 – P3 (1 hour)
Using Katie Morag stories as a stimulus, pupils will learn about life on Scottish islands by visiting our puffer MV Spartan and virtually exploring the inside. We’ll then investigate maps of the island and calculate the best routes to deliver the mail. Finally, pupils will weigh and measure different objects to avoid overloading the mainland mail ship.
MNU 1-10c, MNU 1-11a, SOC 1-02a, SOC 1-14a

Ship Shape ScienceP1-P3 (1 hour) 
Pupils will take part in four science activities related to ships and the sea, including: floating and sinking, materials, balance and more.
TCH 1-06a, TCH 1-10a, SCN 1-15a / TCH 2-06a, TCH 2-10a

Under the Sea,  Nursery – P2 (1 hour)
Join Angie the Anglerfish as we journey from the beach to the deep sea exploring different habitats and objects we find in and around our oceans in this interactive STEM story. Afterwards we will investigate the objects we find. Do they float or sink? Are they living or not? Do they belong in the sea?
SCN 0-01a, SCN 0-15a, SOC 0-08a, TCH 0-10a / SCN 1-07a, TCH 1-06a

Second level and second/third level

Buoyant Adventures, P4 – P7 (60 minutes)
Explore buoyancy, density, floating, sinking and the science behind the world’s first ‘Eureka!’ moment in this interactive STEM workshop.
SOC 2-06a, SCN 2-08b, SCN 2-20a

Full Steam Ahead, P5 – S1 (1 hour)
Dive into the minds of Victorian scientists and engineers as you discover the wonder of steam power. Think gravity, friction, pressure and heat in this hands-on STEM workshop exploring fantastic forces.
SCN 2-04a, TCH 2-10a

Make a Museum, P6 – S3 (1 hour)
Fancy yourself as a Museum curator? Using our object handling boxes, replicas of our objects, design your own museum display and learn about working in a museum.m
HWB 2-20a, SOC 2-01a / HWB 3-20a, SOC 3-01a, SOC 3-02a

Maritime Codebreaking, P7 – S3 (1 hour)
Codes have been used for centuries, to send distress messages from the Titanic, encrypt secret messages on the Enigma machine in WWII and even in Roman armies. In this numeracy-based workshop we’ll test some coding techniques and write our own.
MTH 3-13a, TCH 3-13a, TCH 3-14a

Powering Up, P6 – P7 (90 minutes)
A hands-on workshop investigating renewable energy for P7 classes, including wind, solar and hydroelectric energy. In partnership with National Museums Scotland.

Scottish Shipbuilding, P4 – P7 (75 minutes)
Combine STEM and Social Studies in the story of Scottish shipbuilding and its importance to the lives of people around the Clyde and beyond. Pupils will handle historic shipyard objects before becoming shipbuilders themselves, designing and racing a yacht on our boating pond.
SOC 2-01a, SOC 2-02a, SOC 2-06a, SCN 2-04a, TCH 2-10a

Titanic: The Unsinkable Ship, P4 – P7 (60 minutes)
What led to the world’s most famous shipping disaster? Pupils will discover the science behind sinking ‘the unsinkable ship’ and will get to test out some historic lifejackets, write morse code messages and more.
SOC 2-01a, SOC 2-06a, SCN 2-08b

Coming soon

Using Sound to See, P5 – P7 (60 minutes) | Available December ’19 onward at both sites.
Explore how animals like bats and dolphins can ‘see’ using sound, and how this helps scientists to explore our deepest oceans.
SCN 2-01a, SCN 2-11a, SCN 2-11b, SCN 2-20a

SONAR ScienceP7+| Available December ’19 onwards at both sites. 
SONAR can give scientists information about the seabed. Explore the maths and physics behind this technique and try it for yourself.
MNU 2-10c, SCN 3-11b

Volcanoes! P3-P7 (60 minutes) | Available  December ’19 onwards at both sites.
There are more volcanoes under our seas than there and on land. Find out what makes these volcanoes work and create your own volcanic eruption!
SCN 2-17a, SCN 2-19a, SCN 3-17a

Weaving by numbers, P5+ (60 minutes) |
Irvine (14th Dec ’19 – 29th March ’20), Dumbarton (From 25th April ’20)
Inspired by our new exhibition Woven Waves: The Jutland Tapestries which showcases artist Katie Russell’s series of tapestry weavings inspired by the Battle of Jutland – the largest naval battle of the First World War, this workshop will explore the maths found in weaving techniques.
EXA 2-03a, MTH 2-13a

Sea Monsters: Storytime (Nursery – P2, 1 hour) | Sea Monsters: Mythbusters (P3+, 1 hour)
Irvine only (30th May – 27th September ’20)
Kelpie or Kraken? Dive in to the deep world of Sea Monsters! inspired by our summer exhibition. These two immersive workshops will explore the fantastic beasts of Scottish folklore through storytelling, arts and crafts or scientific mythbusting!
SOC 0-01a, SOC 1-01a | SOC 2-03a, SCN 2-20a

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