Friday, 17 August 2012
The Roald Dahl museum and Story Centre, Great Missenden
Roald Dahl has always been a favourite for adults and children alike, his stories popular for their wild imagination and slightly off the wall-ness, and still regularly seen being read even after so many years. I've wanted to visit the Roald Dahl museum for a long time so jumped at the chance when @TeakayB suggested we visit on our way down to Reading to dog-sit while his mum was on holiday.
The museum is small but perfectly formed and can be found in the quaint little town of Great Missenden. It is split into three sections: Boy (about his childhood), Going Solo (about growing up and joining the RAF) and then a story centre which I wish was my classroom: there was a craft area, animation area, reading area, ideas table, an Automatic Grammatizer, Refrigerator Rhymes, story sacks, dressing up area and probably much much more besides.
The whole thing impressed me with how interactive it was (it's well designed for children) but it also captures the imagination of adults (big kids) too. We listened to a talk given by a member of staff all about Roald Dahl's writing hut and the process he went through every day to get into the right frame of mind for writing. The museum regularly have events such as talks and famous visitors (just check the website for upcoming events).
If we'd have had more time, there's also a couple of walks around the town tracing back important buildings and places in Roald Dahl's life.
In terms of school trips I imagine it would be good for just one class, but as it is so small it can only accommodate up to 35 children at a time so not great for larger schools. They do have some resources available on their website though and I'm definitely tempted to adapt some of the ideas from the Story Centre into my own classroom. And most of all, it's inspired me to want to read more of his books, which is always a good thing; just waiting for them to come down in price on the kindle now!