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Primary schools

Here you’ll find school resources and information to help you plan your visit.

Resources, activities and visits

Free self-led visits

Cost: Free

To ensure that school groups are able to make the most of their museum visit, we require all school groups to book in advance.

Free self-led visits include:

Full day self-led visits:

Bring your class for a full day visit to the museum! We have 3 different timetables available every day, including a scheduled 30 minute lunch slot in our picnic area.

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Small group full / half day visits (maximum 12 pupils):

We encourage smaller groups (maximum 12 pupils) to book in with us for a full day visits so that we can provide you with a timetable that will meet your needs. Booking enquiries for groups of 12 pupils or less can be made using our small groups booking enquiry form.

Afternoon (half-day) visits:

If you wish to bring your group for an afternoon visit after lunch (arrival from 1.30) please complete our booking enquiry form.

Free Resources

Self-led visits can be enhanced through the use of a range of free resources that will help you and your pupils to prepare for your trip to the museum.


The Big Questions

Cost: Free

The Big Question is the ultimate way to enhance your self-led visit to Manchester Museum. Bring your topic to life and connect with our curators through a combination of free pre-and post-visit resources, all helping your pupils to look, connect, explain and wonder. We are delighted to offer KS1 (dinosaurs), KS2 (ancient Egypt & dinosaurs) and SEND / KS2 (careers) resources free of charge.

A short film presented by one of our curators will frame your museum visit around an open-ended enquiry prompt that will support you to plan a whole topic linked to the collection. Alongside this you will have access to a downloadable (and editable) resource pack to help introduce the enquiry question before visiting with simple classroom activities, ideas for using the galleries during your visit, and prompts to use back at school. Feedback your ideas, answers and questions to us at the end of your project, with museum-led livestreams in the summer term.   

Don’t forget to include your chosen Big Question when you make your self-led visit booking! Find out more about our Big Questions.

Monday Takeovers: Golden Mummies

Cost: £250 per class  

On selected Mondays (25 September, 16 October, 13 & 27 November) our museum is dedicated entirely to schools! Bring your class for a whole day at the museum: Discover the incredible Golden Mummies of Egypt exhibition, investigate real ancient Egyptian artefacts and meet our Curator of Egypt and Sudan. With lots of opportunities to ask questions and discuss some really big ideas – comparing ancient and modern, local and global and personal and cultural ideas about representation in life and death – this is a great way to consolidate learning about ancient civilisations.

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Coming soon

These 90 minute workshops will be a paid add-on to the KS2 Ancient Egyptian & new Science-themed Big Questions mentioned above. You will get 90 minutes including both staff-led gallery activity and artefacts handling that will help your pupils really get to grips with their Big Question. Using museum skills we aim for this workshop to fit into any stage of your topic. We will offer these workshops as part of a full day visit so that you also get time for lunch and the chance to spend time visiting the other galleries in the museum too.

Sign up to our Primary e-news to keep up to date, and find out first about our new workshops.


While we focus on our museum-based programme, we will be pausing our outreach offer for now but don’t worry – it will be back!

Sign up to our Primary e-news to keep up to date, and find out first about our outreach offer.

Carbon Ruins Manchester

Cost: Free

Manchester Museum is delighted to offer our Carbon Ruins Manchester programme for KS2 pupils from autumn 2023. Carbon Ruins offers a creative and hopeful way to approach the pressing issue of climate change.

The year is 2050 and you are the curator of an exhibition, Carbon Ruins. The exhibition celebrates our achievement of net zero emissions and contains objects from the Fossil Era back in the 2020s; telling the story of how they fell out of use or were replaced by something else. Your task is to select an object from the Fossil Era that represents the change that has happened to reach net zero, and to create a label that tells the story of that change.

Please visit our dedicated Carbon Ruins Manchester site to find out more about the programme and access our free resources:

Things to know before you visit

Getting here   

There is a drop-off point for coaches outside the museum on Oxford Road. Minibuses can park at Cecil street car park. The museum is also on a major bus route and a short walk from rail and tram stops. Plan your visit here.

There is limited disabled parking available for school group transport. Please contact to discuss this or include this information in your booking or enquiry.

Space for everyone   

  • All of our programming has been made with SEND in mind.
  • We are working on video tours and additional information to support students with SEND and help them prepare for a visit to the museum.
  • Our lifts offer step-free access to all museum spaces.
  • Please let us know of any access requirements when you book your visit.
  • More information on accessibility can be found here.

Risk assessments and group visits  

  • Our Museum Hazard ID document and General Site Risk Assessment are available to support you to produce your own risk assessment for your visit. You are welcome to arrange booking a site visit ahead of your school visit to carry out your risk assessment and we are happy to arrange for you to meet a member of the team, please email to arrange this.
  • Teachers (or other accompanying adults) remain responsible for the general health and safety of children during their visit. Teachers (or other adults) should remain with their primary and secondary school groups at all times.
  • The minimum adult to pupil ratios that we recommend for schools visits is: 1:6 for Early Years & KS1; 1:8 for KS2, 1:15 for KS3, KS4 & Post-16. Note this excludes adults providing 1:1 support.


  • View the museum map here.
  • There is a picnic area on the ground floor next to the Main Hall. Space will be allocated for school groups through the booking process.
  • The Museum Shop is full of souvenirs inspired by our collections and prices start from 50p.
  • There is a water fountain in the Welcome Area.
  • We are able to arrange for storage of coats, bags and lunches for school groups through the booking process.
  • We have lots of toilets throughout the museum including a fully accessible Changing Places toilet and all-gender toilets.

Find more information to help with your visit.

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