Jade and Sonia's Work Experience

Posted on by Anita O'Donovan

Recently, the Museum welcomed two trainee teachers, Jade and Sonia, to come and experience what our education team do and how it differs from the traditional classroom setting. Upon leaving, Jade and Sonia were kind enough to write about how their time working here helped them and the kind of things they got up to!

As students we are currently studying BA (Hons) Primary Education at Leeds Beckett University. As one of our modules we were to undertake 3 weeks professional experience within a different educational setting outside of a primary classroom. After researching we discovered the National Coal Mining Museum offered us with this experience. The museum provides a meaningful, educational experience tailored to different ages, targeting everyone regardless of their background or knowledge. We would like to thank the National Coal Mining Museum for providing us with the opportunities to see officiant learning occurring outside of school settings.


Being on placement at the National Coal Mining Museum has provided me with an excellent, variational learning experience that I can take away and use within my future practise. Before arriving, I was unaware of the wide range of educational workshops and activities the museum offers for children, especially primary school children. I was given the opportunity to observe, shadow and take part in all the workshops; from Wacky Wednesday with the under 5’s to the Aunty Brenda and Sally Fletcher workshops bringing in the aspect of learning about local heritage. Particularly, I have enjoyed the rocks and fossils workshop as it draws on the Year3 National Curriculum and provides exceptional insight and knowledge, with great activities to concrete their learning. Lastly, it was great to see the guides delivering the underground tours to primary schools, getting them actively involved, most importantly, learning whilst having fun. I will definitely be returning in the future, hopefully with my own class of children. I would highly recommend the National Coal Mining Museum, not only for schools looking for an educational trip, but for students looking to gain further knowledge and experience in learning to enhance their degree.


Through this experience I have learnt various things and was able to see how efficient learning can occur outside the classroom. The NCMME offers different workshops and activities for the schools which we were lucky enough to observe. The workshops which the NCMME provide are created for everyone including those with SEN. As a student teacher I believe that through these workshops provided by the NCMME the children learn more here than in a classroom, as they are given a meaningful, hands-on experience which they enjoy, as I have seen this first-hand. Through the different workshops I have observed I personally believe the opportunity to have an immersive day as a miner provides children with all the different aspects a teacher wants to provide for their students outside the classroom. They learn what a life of a miner is like, they can experience the conditions of miners as the buildings are left as they were by the miners who worked at the colliery before it was a museum. They also learn about the working life of a miner/worker underground and get to enjoy a valuable sensory experience by doing some tasks as a miner. At the end of the day the children remember the experiences they have had at the museum and want to come here again because they had fun whilst learning. I would also like to come here again with my class in the future.

If you'd like to find out more about how you can gain education experience, contact the team on education@ncm.org.uk. 



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