A week’s work experience at National Museums Scotland

I have just finished doing my work experience at the National Museum of Scotland and have found it very enjoyable and interesting. I wasn’t sure what to expect at first and when I received my timetable for the week it looked like I would be doing a range of different tasks, along with being involved as part of the Scotland Creates team, a group of young volunteers working on a two-year exhibition project.

I spent the first day being introduced to different people and understanding what Scotland Creates is all about. Once I had an understanding I could then start to give my own input on certain things and carry out activities relating to the project.

Next day we visited the National Museums Collection Centre at Granton. It had never occurred to me before that there so many objects stored away, and what you see displayed in the museum is just a fraction of the whole collection.

Store room in the National Museums Collection Centre
Store room in the National Museums Collection Centre.

On the Wednesday I visited the National Museum of Scotland in the morning to carry out some market research. I had to look out for what types of visitors were coming in and how many there were. I was also asked if any of the objects I saw around the Museum related to Scotland Creates, but I didn’t find any that fitted with the theme. That afternoon I was given images of the chosen objects for Scotland Creates and went out into the Museum to identify them. I then came back and picked the objects I liked best and had to think about how they link together.

The Grand Gallery in the National Museum of Scotland
The Grand Gallery in the National Museum of Scotland.

Thursday morning was eventful. Firstly I went down to the entrance hall and helped people sign up for Magic Carpet Minis and then went up and assisted one of the enablers deliver the session, which was good fun as it was aimed at 0-2 year olds so there was lots of singing! I then went is assist a schools’ Dinosaur workshop for Primary 2 age group. It was very interesting hearing what they were saying and I think they knew more about dinosaurs than I did!!

By Friday I was feeling tired so it was good to get out of the Museum again and go up to the National War Museum in Edinburgh Castle. It was great seeing all the different weapons and uniforms.

The National War Museum at Edinburgh Castle
The National War Museum at Edinburgh Castle.

Overall I had a great week packed with lots of different activities. I would recommend this work experience placement to any high school pupil as it has been very helpful to me and I had a great time. Thanks to Scotland Creates project officer Fiona for making it possible!

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