Museums display objects together to tell a story about a time, place, person, or event. The Museum of Cambridge would love to see the objects in your home that tell your story. 

Make a Museum on a Shelf by following the instructions on the downloadable activity sheet. Make a museum label for this and then share pictures of your display with the Museum of Cambridge. 

Download the full instructions here.
 

Asteriornis maastrichtensis, affectionately known as the Wonderchicken, is among the most exciting bird fossils ever found. It has one of the best-preserved fossil bird skulls in the world, and gives us important insights into the evolutionary origins of modern birds.

It might not look very exciting but flint gravel has a story to tell of a warm chalky sea that covered a lot of England about 90 million years ago. That’s when dinosaur were around although they were not living in this particular sea. Sometimes flint filles the holes made by borrowing animals and sometimes, if we’re lucky it enclosed the remains of sea creatures meaning it is great place to look for fossils.

Scientists use all sorts of different ways to name the new plants, animals and fossils they find.

Two parts - Scientific names usually have two parts, just as people have a first name and a family name.

Latin or Ancient Greek - Often the names use words from Latin or Ancient Greek.

Find out more about the objects and habits that the Romans introduced to Britain. 

In this activity you can find out about "Romanisation",  the process through which Britain became more Roman.

Download the activity here.

Learn more about the niece of the Emperor Augustus, Antonia Minor. Using useful prompts and a planner, imagine a day in her life. 

Download the activity here.

Which emperor's statue was thrown into a river in England? Which Roman invaded Britain first? Which emperor loved to sing? Find out in this activity. 

See busts of Julius Caesar, Claudius, Nero and Hadrian from the Museum's collection and find out more about each one. Discover how they are connected to the history of Britain, and complete the activities to learn more.

Download the activity here (PDF)

You can use any fossil or dinosaur toys, just make sure they are clean. Use your own favourite biscuit recipe, or try this one.

You will need

  • 115g butter
  • 55g caster sugar
  • few drops of vanilla extract
  • 150g plain flour
  • 25g cornflour

Mix the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until just evenly mixed. Stir in the flour and cornflour. Roll into a log, wrap in cling film and chill for 30 mins.

It is really unusual for a palaeontologist (scientist who study fossils) to find a complete skeleton with all the bones in the right place. We are more likely to find only a few bones or a jumbled up skeleton.

Putting a skeleton back to together when you know what the animal looks like can be a challenge, but imagine how hard that becomes when there are no more of those creatures alive for you look at. It is a bit like trying to put a jigsaw puzzle together when you don’t have the photo on the box as a guide.

How does burning fossil fuels threaten Antarctic marine life?

This experiment demonstrates the link between increasing carbon dioxide levels and ocean acidification and freshening oceans. Freshwater and more acidic water in the oceans make life harder for Antarctica’s marine animals.

The experiment and video were made by Nick Barrett. Nick is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge Earth Science Department and The British Antarctic Survey investigating the resistance of Antarctic marine species to predicted freshening and lower salinity in the Southern Ocean.

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