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The Egyptians

Embedding Culture and Creativity in the Curriculum.

1st September 2009 - 31st December 2009

The Using Cultural Organisations to Raise Levels of Attainment (UCORLA) project based on the Egyptians aimed to provide year 4 children with access to both cultural and creative opportunities, with the support of a range of cultural partners, that linked to their work during Literacy, History, Geography, R.E, ICT,  DT, Art, Science and Numeracy lessons. As part of the project, Bolton Library lent the teacher non-fiction and fiction books based on “The Egyptians” and devised a quiz based using KIT machines and Activ8 supported the school in exploring the story of the Israelites exodus from Egypt from the Pharaoh’s point of view. In addition, the year 4 classes visited Bolton Museum to find out about Ancient Civilizations and Ancient Egypt and the school also borrowed the Egyptian loan box from Bolton Museum and the facilitator from the museum supported the children in school in creating their own Egyptian Museum in the classroom. Furthermore, the Phoenix supported the school in creating an Egyptian play and creating a film of the children’s performance and Artists in Schools supported the children in creating an Egyptian textile mural.

  • The teachers commented that the children had been very enthusiastic towards the project, often carrying out research in their own time. Some children visited the local library while others returned to Bolton Museum. Many of the children found out facts about the topic using their computer at home. The children carried out these activities by choice as no homework had been formally set.

    The teachers stated that the project made the topic “hands-on”, which impacted on the children’s learning and the retention of their knowledge. The knowledge that they were going to create their own classroom museum improved the children’s attitude towards their work. In addition, the practical activities, such as the drama, art work, handling of objects and dressing up as Egyptian characters provided the children with the tools to apply their knowledge to their writing.

  • The teachers expressed that the creation of a collage of the Egyptian setting for their historical story, the Activ8 drama session and the library book loans enabled the children to write imaginative, thoughtful and interesting texts. The children also responded well to the writing of information texts since they had the opportunity to visit Bolton Museum and handle artefacts and apply their knowledge of the Egyptians through the drama workshop delivered by the Phoenix. These activities enthused the children to produce their won information booklets, museum guides and museum artefact labels. The texts which the children produced were fantastic – even from children with Special Educational Needs and the children’s ability to organise and present their writing had improved as well.

    Furthermore, the teachers expressed that the project had improved their teaching skills since they had acquired new drama techniques to enhance their teaching in all curriculum areas. In addition, the teachers commented that their own knowledge of the topic had improved. They also stated that having so many knowledgeable and expert professionals teaching the children has had an impact on their teaching and they would be able to transfer the skills acquired in delivering this topic to their teaching of other topics. They added that they would impart the knowledge that they had gained about cultural and creative organisations to other staff in the school to enable them to use the organisations in their own teaching.