Well hidy-ho friendly readers.
I am exhausted. I’m not even kidding. The time change has me all kinds of messed up and I’ve not slept 8 hours over the past three days. I’m a little loopy (and did I mention exhausted).
Anyhow, I know it’s been a while between posts and no doubt you have all been sitting on the edges of your seat waiting for this one (insert sarcasm button here). Blogging is hard work though and there are lots of things happening. We’re full swing ahead for Spring at my library. My calendar is fully, fully booked- like completely (though I did manage to adult some and get to the dentist this week for a check up and cleaning- bad news though, cavity- filling = $150).
In the meantime I’m reviewing some book proposals for future publication through Roman & Littlefield publishers (check out their site HERE). And School Library Journal is still sending their ace advanced readers for review. I’ve got these two epic looking ones through and will review very soon.
Plus I’m trying my own had at writing too, but can I get to that this week? (not likely). Needless to say, this St. Patrick’s Day weekend may be very merry indeed (maybe then I’ll get some sleep).
So, where was I?….
Ah yes, I was going to blog about this awesome program I pulled off yesterday with the assistance of one of my colleagues Paola Diaz and another colleague; artist and author to be Paige Carpenter.
We recently did a WWII exhibit together (I blogged about it here), and that worked well but it was on a huge scale for my library’s little heart to handle. So, to prove that history can come to life for anyone in workable / doable programs that can be executed relatively easily, we hosted a smaller history program (aimed at children – yes, you heard me), just to show that we could. Because our ultimate goal is to bring history to life for all of our community right? And even though we had our skeptics, we pulled it off AGAIN! So nerny, nerny, ner, ner.
Because I am in the sharing mood, I will post what we did here.
Now the clause is that we Pinterested this a lot, because Pinterest is our friend, and why reinvent the wheel so to speak. Also, remember that this program is for children ages 8-12 years (and we had younger tag along with older siblings), so we did simplify information displayed (while Paige and I were eager to share the mythology of Osiris’ replacement golden phallus, benevolently supplied by his wife Isis, we decided that 8 year olds probably didn’t need that information).
Feel free to use what we’ve got here.
I used a few reference sites which I’ll include at the end so you have the sources of information. Also, I’ll link the Pinterest pages where I can.
The total program cost was $25.
Pictures from the Program
So what we wanted to do was introduce a museum-esk experience to the children but with some interactivity. We wanted children to gain knowledge of Ancient Egypt, but also the opportunity to do something fun with it. So we created information posters and boards and set them up around the room, but at each station there was something to do.
We did an introduction to Ancient Egypt via a timeline, a map and picture boards and also an information board about Ancient Egyptian Weapons. Obviously, for practical purposes, children could not actually create weapons, but to test their knowledge on Egyptian history and whose-who, we had them do a trivia catcher (otherwise known as a ‘fortune teller’ or a ‘cootie catcher’).
I am one for saving time and so I went ahead and paid for mine (it was $2.75 online- huge budget I know) and downloaded it. I am willing to pay if it saves me some time and in this case the time spent on me trying to figure out how to make these to cost of buying ratio was well worth my money. I cannot post a close up picture of mine here because it is after all, for sale, but the link is HERE and you can see it and buy it yourself (see the completed sample in the picture below).
We also did some boards on Ancient Egyptian Gods and on jewelry. Paige did a great job of finding someone with a scale with which we could place a nice little feather to honor the mythology of the god Anubis and the weighing of the heart. She also packaged some DIY jewelry so that our children could make their own anklets. Here’s a link to the Pinterest post on this.
We had a WHOLE WALL dedicated to death. Because, why not? Kids love that. Ours was about pyramids, mummification, the tomb of King Tut, and featured mummy making, sarcophagus decorating and apple mummification.
Check out the wall:
Apple mummification (found the recipe online HERE – thanks to the Royal Ontario Museum).
Children decorated their own sarcophagus’ – see the original idea here.
Children learned about hieroglyphics and created their own names in a cartouche. Basically I grabbed a cartouche template online and an Egyptian hieroglyphic alphabet and told them to go for it.
We also introduced a fantastic virtual reality element to this program with a loaned pair of VR goggles and an I-phone. I found 360 degree photos online at VR Egypt’s Facebook page which is here (their website is here). After downloading an app which let us see the images through the goggles, I was able to transport the children from our library into various monuments and temples of Egypt. The app is an easy and free download and it’s here if you need it.
And here I am trying it out:
We used sources online and in-library to create our posters. Some of the resources and sites used were:
Barnham, Kay. Mangy Mummies, Menacing Pharaohs, and the awful afterlife: a moth-eaten history of the extraordinary Egyptians! Gareth Stevens, 2016. Available here.
Stewart, David. You wouldn’t want to be an Egyptian mummy!: disgusting things you’d rather not know. Franklin Watts, 2013. Available here.
For pictures we used Wikipedia because they are generally copyright free.
How it worked:
Great. Children loved it and they did actually read the information. Parents joined in too. It was a relaxed and happy program and generally free flowing in a good space. The apple mummification and VR were most popular, but the children did everything we had set out and did a great job too.
I pulled books on Ancient Egypt that we had in our library and most of them were taken for checking out. I also added a simple music playlist which got us all in the mood.
Check it out here.
We had a great time doing this and putting it together despite the lack of sleep and the busy week. It was great to once again show that history can be brought to life for our community and that children are a part of that same community. The program got a lot of attention and was just generally fun.
So there you have it, another one under the belt. And another Living History program delivered
Paige wants to do Ellis Island next.
I told her I’ll sleep on it 😉
Til next time.