Join Michael and Jemma at the Museum on Friday 28 August 2015 from 2.30-4pm and find out what it is like to be on a dig. The two archaeologists recently excavated a Neolithic tomb in Kerry and have lots of stories to tell. Two finds from the tomb will be on display, a saddle quern stone and a curious late medieval coin! This is also your chance to play a fun game of snakes and ladders based on Michael’s and Jemma’s dig. This is a free Heritage Week event for families, all welcome.
Kerry County Museum is delighted to announce that it has added the Sandford Award to its impressive list of accolades. The Sandford Award recognises excellence in the provision of heritage education, particularly to schools but also in the area of informal learning such as family programmes. It is managed by the Heritage Education Trust in the UK in partnership with Bishop Grosseteste University in Lincoln, and it encourages opportunities for children to explore their heritage outside of the classroom.
The Judges’ report noted:
“The standard of delivery observed was generally very high. Critical thinking, emotional learning and creativity are at the centre of planning for learning programmes. Kerry County Museum is blessed with the most important resource of any heritage learning facility, a dedicated and knowledgeable team, which develops and delivers meaningful and instructive programmes at all levels”.
Helen O’Carroll, Museum Manager, is thrilled with the Award and with the Judges’ findings: “This is a fantastic achievement by the whole team and I am really pleased that the Judges identified the dedication, commitment and sense of community that is so necessary in a small group such as ours. We mightn’t be the biggest museum in the world or have the largest budget but we have one of the most important core ingredients – a terrific bunch of people who are passionate about what they do. Our team is small but our energy and enthusiasm are huge and that’s why we are able to deliver programmes that engage and inspire”.
Kerry County Museum is now a member of a select group as one of only four holders of the Award in Ireland, joining Muckross Traditional Farms, Fota Wildlife Park and the National Museum of Ireland – Country Life. The Award is granted for a period of five years, and each site is reassessed before regaining the imprimatur. Kerry is perhaps a hot-spot for the Award as the first time it was granted outside of the UK the honour went to Muckross in 2003 and they have successfully retained it ever since.
The Report highlighted the team’s skill in delivering enjoyable and interactive experiences that suit a range of ages, abilities and learning styles. Education Officer Claudia Kohler says that adaptability is the key to using all of the Museum’s resources so that programmes can be tailored to different groups and abilities: “the Museum as a whole is an amazingly rich resource that can be drawn on in all sorts of ways. Our exhibitions cover 8,000 years of the history of Kerry, telling local stories set in a national context. We have different themed trails throughout the displays and we use activity sheets, interactive exhibits as well as guided tours to draw out stories that are relevant across the primary and secondary school curriculum”.
Claudia is delighted that the Judges picked the Medieval Experience as the highlight. “They point out that it is a superb teaching resource for schools and a great tool for comparative social, environmental and scientific studies of the local area. It includes our archaeology workshop, ‘Bone Investigators’, where children get to dig up two Viking skeletons, a man and a woman, along with exciting replica grave goods”.
The Sandford Award’s official citation declares that:
“Kerry County Museum offers learning programmes that are very well developed and delivered in a sensitive way by a knowledgeable and talented team. Schools, families and community groups will benefit from a visit, as the collection and galleries cover the history of settlement and life in Kerry for over eight thousand years, bringing it alive with dioramas and stories of real people and communities. It is a living history that educates and entertains”.
The awards ceremony will take place in November, but in the meantime, Kerry County Museum can now add its name to an august list of winners, and take its place as one of the leading providers of heritage education in the country.
Kerry County Museum is delighted to host an exhibition showcasing Chinese Creative Culture using traditional materials as part of the Zhejiang Cultural Festival 2015. The exhibition will be officially opened by Cllr. Pat McCarthy, Mayor of Kerry, Mr. Jiwei Zheng, Vice-Governor of Zhejiang Province, China and Mr. Jianguo Xu, Chinese Ambassador to Ireland on Saturday 25th July at 3.30pm. The exhibition will run from 25th – 29th July and admission is free of charge. All welcome. Other events include a traditional Chinese Museum Concert in Siamsa Tire Folk Theatre on Saturday 25th July at 1.30pm. All events are free of charge but it is essential to pre-book the concert at Siamsa Tire. The festival is supported by the Zhejiang Provincial Department of Culture, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Ireland and Kerry County Council.
Two men dressed in full medieval armour paid a surprise visit to the Museum on Tuesday 24th March. Brendan Halpin and Jack Pinson are members of Medieval Armoured Combat Ireland, which promotes full contact sport in medieval armour. They are part of a team of five representing Ireland in the World Championships to be held in Malbork, in Poland between the 29th April and 2nd May this year. On Monday 23rd March they set out from Waterville with the intention of hitchhiking their way along the west coast of Ireland to Galway, dressed as two fully-armoured medieval knights to raise awareness of their participation in the World Championships. They arrived unexpectedly and surprised some of the school groups on the Museum’s Easter trail – the kids were of course madly enthusiastic when they saw them and bombarded with them with questions. Brendan and Jack spent the morning with the groups, answering questions and demonstrating their skills in medieval combat. Good luck to the two boys in the World Championships and be sure to stop if you see them on the road in the next few days – you can’t miss them!
“The Fram”, the original Norwegian polar exploration ship, which was used by the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen and his team to become the first explorers to reach the South Pole, will turn green in Oslo on St Patrick’s Day as part of Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening. This sees a host of major landmarks and iconic sites around the world illuminated in green for St Patrick’s Day.
Like Norway, Ireland is one of only a small number of countries around the globe which can boast of having had a member of the polar expeditions during the heroic age of polar exploration. To highlight this link, the Irish Embassy in Oslo is hosting its St Patrick’s Day reception on the deck of the ship. Aidan Dooley has been invited to perform excerpts of his acclaimed play Tom Crean: Antarctic Explorer at the reception. Amundsen is a very revered figure in Norway and the Embassy is hopeful that the highlighting of the link between his efforts and those of Crean will help to reinforce the strong links between Norway and Ireland.
04 March 2015
National Gallery of Ireland, Clare Street Entrance, Dublin 2
Kerry County Museum will participate in this forum which has been organised by the Heritage Council, under the auspices of the Museum Standards Programme for Ireland, with the support of the National Gallery of Ireland. The forum is an opportunity to discuss the facilitation of loans between Irish National Cultural Institutions and the Irish museum sector. It originates from a suggestion from the National Gallery of Ireland that it might be useful to organise a day where the sector could come together to discuss this topic.
Elaine Sansom, MSPI Assessor and museum consultant, will speak on how participation in the Museum Standards Programme has improved collections management standards in Ireland. She will also present findings on two reports commissioned by the UK’s Museums Association on the attitudes and barriers to lending in the UK. It is also anticipated that a representative from the Dept of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht will speak about its Collections Mobility Grants Scheme.
The rest of the programme will include a series of short presentations from the museum sector and National Cultural Institutions culminating in a lengthy roundtable discussion chaired by Pat Cooke, Director of the MA in Cultural Policy and Arts Management, UCD. The aim of the day is to increase understanding and agree points towards improving the mobility of collections in Ireland.
2015 Annual Conference – Museums in Society: Navigating Public Policy
Friday 27 February – Sunday 1 March 2015
Ulster Museum, National Museums Northern Ireland, Belfast
The IMA organises a themed Annual Conference in spring each year, offering an opportunity for members of the Irish museums community to meet, network and discuss issues of relevance for the Irish museum sector.
The Annual Conference will examine how museums respond to, and negotiate, policy directions. It will focus in particular on museums’ role in relation to social inclusion, education, economic regeneration, and tourism agendas.
Invited speakers and conference participants will share their experiences and expertise on the interdependent relationship between government bodies and museums: the ‘mirror and lamp’ effect whereby public policies both reflect and guide the functions and missions of the museum and vice versa. The conference will examine how museums can better position themselves to reflect changes within society and in government policies, while at the same time performing their historical roles of custodianship, presentation and scholarship. How should museums approach the difficult task of fulfilling these multiple, and sometimes competing, functions?
Kerry County Museum will close on Friday 19 December 2014 and will re-open to the public on Tuesday 6 January 2015.
We wish all our visitors a Happy Christmas and hope to see you all in the New Year.
Calling all schoolchildren between ages 5 and 12. It’s that Jingle Bell time of year again!
With Christmas fast approaching, there’s no better way to get in the festive spirit than with a visit to our magical Christmas Wonderland!
Make some colourful decorations for your Christmas tree!
Find all the hidden puzzle pieces in the Museum Gallery and put them together to solve the puzzles!
Make Christmas memories that will last a lifetime at Kerry County Museum.
This offer is open to schools and must be booked in advance.
Bookings can be made by calling 087 – 9021580
There are three time slots each day:
9.30am, 11.00am and 12.30pm.
Cost: Only €1 per pupil! – Teachers go free.
Will you dare walk our Haunted Hall
Where creatures lurk both great and small
This is not the stuff of dreams
A wrong turn can end in screams
This scary trip will leave you shaking
Then for trick or treat you’ll get creating
A masterpiece you can take away
If you survive for another day…
Turn your hand to a Gruesome Game
Some are slimy, wet and sticky
Others cleaner but just as tricky
October 25 – October 30
Haunted Hall 10.00am – 5.00pm Daily
(scariest times to visit 12 noon – 4.00pm)
Make Your Own Trick or Treat Bag 10.00am –5.00pm Daily
Haunted Hall 10.00am – 7.00pm
(scariest times to visit 2.00pm – 7.00pm)
Make Your Own Trick or Treat Bag 10.00am – 6.30pm
Gruesome Games 2.00pm – 7.00pm