Penelope Lovesy 12/02/2021 10:40:15
This month’s YAC blog has been written by Patrick Grey who has been volunteering as an Assistant YAC leader at Poole Museum for over ten years.
Poole Museum supports the Poole branch of the Young Archaeologists' Club (YAC), a nationwide club set up by the Council for British Archaeology (CBA). The Club is open to young people aged between eight and sixteen, meeting once a month. We have a team of adult volunteer leaders, who run the Club on a day to day basis, planning the activities, vetting of current and potential volunteers, and raising funds to pay for the activities. All of this is underpinned by Louise, the Learning Assistant, who ensures young members and their families can experience the expertise of the Museum’s Curator, Local History Manager, Learning Activity Leaders and other specialists each month.
Through the Museum we have partnered with Bournemouth University to spend a day at a real archaeological dig site each year, as well as our monthly events in the Museum and in Scaplen’s Court. Apart from the annual dig, all topics in the monthly sessions have been suggested by the members themselves.
Since the coronavirus pandemic started we have changed our practice, moving our monthly sessions to Zoom. If you thought this would be a rather staid stopgap, you’d be mistaken! We have still been able to do hands-on activities through a webcam – for example, instead of baking ship’s biscuits in the oven at Scaplen’s Court, we’ve all followed along in real time. We’ve decoded Morse code messages, made World War 2 inspired loo roll and mummified teddy bears, all whilst learning history and archaeology! Our virtual meetups have been great for keeping in touch with our members and learning more about their lives in lockdown.
As volunteers we are privileged to work so closely with the museum and play a healthy and active role in our community. Though we’ve enjoyed working remotely, we can’t wait to resume sessions at the Museum!