"Oxford: the War and the World, 1914 - 9" Exhibition Project

Year Eight History students were privileged to welcome University of Oxford researcher, Hanna Smyth, to introduce the exhibition that she has been helping to create: Oxford: the War and the World, 1914 – 9. This touring exhibition is coming to Cheney School’s Rumble Museum as one of its venues in December. It tells twelve stories of individuals who were involved in World War One in some way, and who have some connection to Oxford. Year Eight students will be involved in creating a guidebook for this exhibition in the coming weeks!

Hanna started by asking everyone to think about what a museum has to think about when it is putting on an exhibition. She pointed out that one of the key things to think about is editing, and how to take the information that you have, and shape it into an interesting exhibition that is appropriate to the audience. She asked the students what the difference between memory and history was, and some said that memory was an opinion and personal and living, whereas history was impartial and collective and continued through time. Hanna asked everyone to be aware, as the group begins to work on our own display boards project, that memories, history and museums are never neutral. They all have a perspective, and they all choose to include some things and overlook others.


Digital Collection Day at the Rumble Museum

This Friday 2nd November, the Rumble Museum held its second digital collection day. The day was held in partnership with the University of Oxford, as part of their national Lest We Forget project. The museum opened its doors to the community, who came with a wide range of items, including stories, photographs, medals, letters and diaries. As well as collecting items from the Wars, we were also collecting stories and items about pioneering women over the past 100 years, as part of our Rumble Suffrage Season.
 

Technology and the "Diseases of Modern Life" Workshops

We were very privileged today to be able to welcome Professor Sally Shuttleworth and Dr Catherine Charlwood from the University of Oxford Humanities Centre (TORCH) to introduce an exciting project on the theme of 'Diseases of Modern Life' to Year Eight students.

They started off by looking at a statement made by a Victorian doctor, James Crichton Browne, who observed in 1860: "We live in an age of electricity, of railways, of gas, and of velocity in thought and action.  In the course of one brief month more impressions are conveyed to our brains than reached those of our ancestors in the course of years, and our mentalising machines are called upon for a greater amount of fabric than was required of our grandfathers in the course of a lifetime"

Anthropology and the Living Museum

We have been running new anthropology workshops at the Rumble Museum to engage students in our collections and in our Living Museum project.

When students arrived at these workshops, there were six different objects on your tables and an “archaeological find sheet”. They all explored the objects and imagined they were discovering them as curious archaeologists, looking for and recording as much information as possible.


The Story of Cheney School: Display

 

Cheney School's earliest roots stretch all the way to around 1797, when four Sunday Schools were started in Gloucester Green. One of these gradually grew, and went on to move into a purpose built site on New Inn Hall Street in 1901, becoming Oxford Central Girls School. Eventually, in 1959 it moved to the Cheney Lane site and became Cheney Girls Grammar School. However, this is only half the story! In 1934 John Henry Brookes created a junior day department of the Arts and Technical College, based in Church Street near st Ebbe's. This later become Cheney Technical School and moved to Cheney Lane in 1954. The two schools eventually merged in 1972 to become Cheney Comprehensive School.


Introducing the Suffragettes: Museum Display Project

This week our Year Eight History students who are involved in the "From Sappho to Suffrage" museum project continued their journey!

They started by presenting some of the wonderful display boards and leaflets they had prepared for their chosen suffragettes. There were some very thoughtful, sensitive and also entertaining ideas and layouts. A range of different suffragettes were chosen. A popular choice was Emily Davison, who famously tried to attach a suffragette's flag to the King's horse and died doing so. We talked about whether she intended to kill herself - her return ticket has suggested it may not have been her intention. Some also looked at people like Annie Kenney, who was a mill worker who campaigned for the right for women to vote.


A Journey through the Festival of Imagined Worlds

On Friday 9th February, we held our Festival of Imagined Worlds at Cheney School! The festival was a celebration of the magical worlds invented by authors, and an exploration of ancient artefacts and archaeology in connected to our myth and imagined worlds. Hundreds of visitors and Cheney school students were able to explore four different main fictional worlds: J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Lewis Carroll and Harry Potter. A yellowbrick road connected the different worlds, and in each one, there were a very wide range of stalls, workshops, activities and decorations. Outside, there were beautiful owls and other birds of prey, brought by Millets Farm, as well as Quidditch, which visitors could take part in!

World War One Collection Day

This Friday 10th November, the Rumble Museum held its first ever collection day. In partnership with the University of Oxford, as part of their national Lest We Forget project, the museum opened its doors to the community, who came with a wide range of items, including stories, photographs, medals, letters and diaries.

Rumble Museum's Green Season Launched!

On Friday 19th January, the Rumble Museum, in partnership with Cheney School's Environmental Impact Team, held a Green Festival. The event involved stalls and workshops aimed at raising awareness of a range of green and sustainable initiatives to the Cheney community. Over the next few weeks and months, the Rumble Museum is working with Cheney School's Environmental Impact Team to explore the vital issues of sustainability and conservation.

Linear B workshops for primary school students

This October, we were delighted to welcome two Year Five/Six classes from East Oxford Primary School to the Rumble Museum and Classics Centre to explore the Minoan Civilisation and Linear B!

The Year Fives and Sixes had been learning all about the ancient Greeks this term at school, so these workshops gave them a glimpse into the period of history before Greek civilisation began to emerge - around 3000 - 1200BC when the Minoan Civilisation flourished. The first thing both groups did on arrival was to have a go at chalking the outline of a labyrinth onto the concrete outside! All sorts of different shapes and sizes of labyrinth appeared. We then went across to the Classics Centre to talk about the cilivisation and site in which the labyrinth story originated.

Londinium: Amphitheatre and Museum of London visit

This week, Year Eight and Nine classics students set off for the city of London to explore the Roman remains and learn about life in “Londinium”. The students were split into their year groups on arrival to take part in two different activities.
 
One part of the day involved visiting the Guildhall Art Gallery. When this beautiful gallery was built, about thirty years ago, the developers were fascinated to discover a number of walls as they were digging the foundations. They soon realised that they had discovered an archaeological site which historians had been searching for for many years – the remains of London’s Roman Amphitheatre!

Imagined Worlds: Writing, Art and D&T Competition for Schools

In celebration of our Iris Festival of Imagined Worlds on 9th February 2018, we are delighted to be launching a competition for schools! The Festival is themed around the fictional worlds of many different authors, and there will also be four distinct 'worlds' which visitors will be able to walk through and explore: J.R.R. Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, C.S. Lewis and Lewis Carroll.