UCL Special Collections now in Schools!

Schools can now work with an Education Coordinator to access one of the country’s biggest and most diverse collection of rare books, manuscripts, archives and records, free of charge.

Date:    Ongoing at dates that suit you
Time:    Ongoing at times that suit you
Venue:  Usually on school sites, sometimes at UCL Bloomsbury Campus

What is UCL Special Collections?

Special Collections is part of UCL’s Library Services and it takes care of rare books, manuscripts and archives.  It is one of the largest Special Collections in the South of England and holds over 600,000 items.

The collection covers a vast number of subject areas and includes fine examples of medieval manuscripts, early printed books, 18th century works and highly important 19th and 20th century collections of personal papers, archival material, and literature.

How do we work with schools?

We aim to minimise extra work for teachers and to ensure activities are carefully tailored for their class’ requirements and needs.

Our Education Coordinator usually liaises with the class teacher in advance of suggesting specific activities or resources.  This might involve a few emails or phone calls, or she is very happy to meet teachers at their schools in person.  She is a qualified teacher (DBS checked) and can be as involved as the teacher would like in leading and/or supporting the sessions.

Most of what we do falls into one of three categories:

1) One-off visits to schools: standalone sessions that can be specific to a project or scheme of work, or focus on the skills needed to work with primary resources more generally.

2) Bespoke projects: a series of lessons that explore a particular topic or skillset in depth. This includes helping with special school projects or whole school initiatives and projects can last anything from a few weeks to a whole term or even longer.

3) Teacher CPD: specially organised visits to UCL Special Collections for groups of teachers, subject specific workshops or simple ‘inspiration days’ that use a range of archival items, rare books and manuscripts.  Sessions could also focus on the skills needed to use primary resources within schemes of work or class projects.

How to book

If you’re interested in finding out more, email Vicky Price at v.price@ucl.ac.uk or call her on 020 7612 6304.  Teacher CPD training also available.