Archaeologist visit to King’s Ely Acremont fires pupils’ imaginations
8th May 2018

University of Cambridge and British Museum Archaeologist Dr John MacGinnis visited King’s Ely Acremont – much to the delight of the children.

Dr MacGinnis popped into school to help launch the new theme for the term for Year 1 pupils, which is Time Travellers. Using the large sandpit, he showed the children how to excavate and sort different artefacts, and how to then use them as evidence when coming to conclusions about people from the past.

Dr MacGinnis also brought in some artefacts he had dug up, one of which was a 7,000-year-old piece of pottery all the way from Iraq. Dr MacGinnis is an independent post-doctoral researcher at the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge. He specialises in the study of Neo-Babylonian and Assyrian archaeology.

New terms at King’s Ely Acremont always start with a ‘wow’ day to introduce a new topic: a stimulation that inspires curiosity and fires a child’s natural interest and enthusiasm. For example, to launch the new theme for the term for Reception pupils, they arrived at school to find a mysterious cracked egg shell and some footprints in the den leading out into the garden.

At first, the children talked about what might have broken out of the shell and among the suggestions were a penguin, an ostrich and a chicken. There was nothing for it but to follow the footprints and the trail of ‘animal poop’ outside where they quickly found a note alongside another unhatched egg. The note asked them to look after the egg until it hatched and how to care for it. Once the egg had hatched it soon became apparent that they were going to be discovering all about dinosaurs!

Year 2 pupils were presented with a gilded blue box tied with red ribbon and were told it contained clues linked to their new topic for the term. They discovered that inside the box were wrapped parcels. Each child opened a parcel and enjoyed being detectives to work out the connection between the clues. They discovered their new topic this term is London Treasures.

Learning is brought to life throughout the term at King’s Ely Acremont with the help of hands-on experiences, visits from experts and exciting trips. Our pupils develop learning habits which stick with them throughout their King’s Ely journey, taking great pride in their achievements along the way.


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