Last week saw our Year 7 students visit the Museum of London on a Classic trip.
The museum is a wonderful venue for schools, with workshops,. activities and handling sessions aplenty, super historical galleries and iconic exhibits and, even more remarkable, it’s all free, gratis and for nothing; pretty impressive in this day and age, I’d say!
I also have to say that not only was I delighted with the behaviour and enthusiasm of our students, but their knowledge of the Ancient Romans actually left me astonished, with some of them displaying an understanding of issues that would not have disgraced some of our Sixth Formers. They all engaged really well with the object handling sessions (how good is that, handling artefacts like sword grips tweezers, unguent jars, flutes and paw print-marked roof tiles from 2,000 years ago) and loved the Gallery storytelling from a lady who delivered an exciting and dramatic evocation of the life of that famous rebel/freedom fighter Queen Boudicca. The students’ pre battle speeches from both sides of the argument were also hugely creative and delivered with real gusto. Priceless!
They also really enjoyed the Roman galleries where one piece caught my eye as a symbol of what the Empire really meant – an inscription in finest Proconessian marble (from Turkey) set up by a man called Tiberinius Celerianus who came from the civitas of the Bellovaci in Gaul (France), dedicated both to the Emperors in Rome and to Mars Camulos- a conflation of both Roman and Celtic deities only found in Southern Britain. It’s also one of the few inscriptions to actually mention Londinium. Roman society, like British society, was a wonderful piece of syncretism open to all kind of influences and much enriched thereby; it’s good that some things don’t change.
Mark Olejnik – Head of Years 7-11