Subject Specialist Sessions (Cherry Thinn, ITP 2018, Myanmar)

Mingalabar and Auspiciousness to you all!

I am Cherry Thinn, on the blog for the second time. I am Assistant Curator at the Halin Archaeological Museum, Myanmar.

My blog is about Monday of Week 6 of ITP 2018 (6 July), and firstly, I would like to specially thank all the ITP team coordinators and session faciliators who arranged the programme and related visits for us for the day.

It was a Subject Specialist Session focus day for all fellows, and in the morning, different groups attended sessions on: Marketing and Press; International Engagement; Human Remains and the Bio-Archaeology Lab; Scientific Research; Archives etc. Our group was led by Jessica Juckes (ITP Assistant) to the Scientific Research session.

Welcome introduction by Carl Heron, Director of Scientific Research

We started with a welcome and introductions by Carl Heron (Director of Scientific Research) and Antony Simpson (Scientist) in the Atrium of the WCEC (World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre), British Museum. In the labs, we first learnt about Scanning Electron Microscopy from Caroline Cartwight (Scientist) and Margaret Reed (Collaborative Doctoral Placement Student).

Session in X-radiography Laboratory

After this we toured to the X-radiography laboratories too and met Dan O’Flynn (Scientist: X-radiography and Imaging) Later we enjoyed tea and cake with all the staff from the Scientific Research department. We received knowledge about X-ray fluorescence from Scientist Duncan Hook, and about molecular analysis from Scientist Rebecca Stacey.

Group photo with Department of Scientific Research

Group photo with Department of Scientific Research

It was amazing and excellent to know about their research work and some answers to the difficult questions of “How old is it? Where does is come from? What is it made of? How was it made?” etc.

I really appreciate all museum scientists as they act as a good connection between culture and science, giving knowledge and information to the next generation in the world of developing new technologies.

In the afternoon, all ITP fellows dispersed in new groups for their next subject specialist session. These included: Staff Training and Skills; Volunteering; Fieldwork; and Prints and Drawings. I joined with a new group for the Volunteering session, delivered by Francesca Goff (Volunteer Manager, Learning and National Partnerships). She gave us the details of the various volunteer training, selection and working procedures at the British Museum. She also told us about various tours that are conducted by volunteers and how all these programmes are being run and managed. Alison Laas, one of the British Museum’s volunteers, then shared her experiences of volunteering in the British Museum.


In the Volunteering session with Francesca and Alison

I am so impressed by the work that allows the public to participate as volunteers in British Museum tour programmes. Among these programmes, hands-on desks are the most useful idea to try to apply in my museum in Myanmar. We do have stamp souvenir corners in some museums but these kinds of detailed policies I learnt today might help me to develop good plans to enhance the running of hands-on sessions in my museum.

Both of the day’s sessions were brainstorming for all ITP fellows as they were able to relate ideas to their organisations and think about applying these ideas. I felt that the selection of sessions matched the preferences we requested, so it proved to be a highly useful learning endeavor for each of us.