Meet the Nominees: Barnsley Museums
- 29 October 2021
In our Meet the Nominees series, we're featuring guest blogs by five organisations that have been shortlisted for the 2021 Fantastic For Families Awards. Find out why they are fantastic for families, what motivates them and which project they've been nominated for...
Next up: Barnsley Museums! Their team told us how they created new online offers and inspirational at-home activities for families during lockdown: “When Barnsley’s museums went into lockdown we wanted to make sure we were still offering families the chance to make memories - to learn, play and have fun-filled adventures together. So, as part of our Under Fives programme, we set about creating content that brought families access to our treasures from home. We shared stories about owls that couldn’t fly, lions without manes, dance workshops inspired by Elmer the elephant as inspiration, hundreds of creative craft activities, online jigsaws for young children and even recipes for everything from bird seed cake to Victorian vegetable soup. Parents told us how much they valued these simple, imaginative suggestions of activities and ideas to make and do together at a difficult time when many people were struggling for motivation.
“I found this really helpful. I struggle with play and find it really hard to know what to do. We’ve played this afternoon and both had fun.” Parent
One resource that the museum team put together was especially fantastic for families and had a wide impact: “Our ‘Barnsley Museums Makes’ packs provided over 14,000 children in the borough with beautiful, simple activity sheets and resources exploring themes connected to our collections through creative and playful activities, song, dance and stories. Families told us as well as the materials required to complete the activities, it was really helpful to get ideas for simple household objects that could also be used.”
Finally, as the museums can open their doors again, it’s not only families who have found the lockdown resources helpful - the museum team has learned a lot, too: “We’re so happy that we’re now able to welcome families back to our sites again but the pandemic has made us even more committed to continuing to develop our family provision in meaningful ways, using different tools so we can bring joy, curiosity and fun to even more families.“
Barnsley Museums operates five sites across Barnsley: Cannon Hall, Experience Barnsley, Cooper Gallery, Worsborough Mill and the Elsecar Heritage Centre, each with its own unique opportunities to engage families through a varied programme including: ⭐️ holiday and term-time under 5s workshops ⭐️ family-friendly trails ⭐️ activity packs ⭐️ in-gallery interpretation across the 5 sites. Find out more via their Fantastic for Families profile, website, Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.
Curious about the other Fantastic for Families Awards 2021 shortlisted organisations? Check out the list, and look out for when we announce the winners on Tuesday 16 November 2021! 🎉 You can also read about Chichester Festival Theatre, Dundee Contemporary Arts, Lakeland Arts and Oily Cart.