Museum educational programs
Annually Hrodna State Historical and Archaeological Museum offers various themes of tours, lectures, activities for visitors of different ages (preschool, elementary school, middle and high school students of secondary special educational institutions, colleges, technical schools, university students, adults).
Season-ticket service is offered to school students. Each session consists of several classes on various topics according to each age group of visitors. The following classes are of greatest demand: “Life of Ancient People”, “Witnesses of Everlasting Glory”, “How the Book came to us”, “Animals and Birds in Belarusian Fairy Tales”, “A Little House in the Sea”, “On a visit to Neptune”, “Kinds of Art”, “A Journey to the Post Office Country” etc.
Lectures, guided tours, classes take place over a definite month according to the season-ticket, on convenient for the customer day by appointment. The Museum offers free admission to one of the temporary exhibitions in the museum to anyone who purchased a season-ticket according to the teacher’s choice as a gift.
The Museum employees have developed a pilot program “Hrodna Studies” for the pupils of 2-8 grades, designed according to the age and psychological characteristics of the children audience, they identified instructional techniques, forms of work, problems, adequate for the students of a certain age group. The purpose of the created program, which introduces the history and culture of Hrodna from ancient times to the present, is the cultivating of spiritual world outlook of the citizen-patriot of his native city, who is not only proud of its remaining historical and cultural heritage, but also protects it.
The reliance was made exactly on the effectiveness of the Museum environment.The Museum with its exhibits and exhibitions, cultural and historical monuments of the city should become the ground for schoolchildren for getting the knowledge. It is such environment which helps become aware of the world of things of the past centuries, creates the best emotional conditions for the journey into the past, maintains interest to the knowledge of the kind. (For example, “The Tale of the Old City”, “The Defender of Hrodna Land Davyd Haradzensky”, “Hrodna Residents in the Fight against the Crusaders”, “Vytawt the Great, the Governor of Hrodna”, “Stefan Batory and Hrodna”, “Birds of our Land”, “The Old Apartment”, “Maxim’s House in Hrodna”, “Hrodna Architectural School”, etc.).
The program consists of not only traditional forms of cultural and educational activities, such as guided tours, lectures, classes, but it has a separate cycle which is designed specially for high school students. The program “Tours about Hrodna” is aimed at introducing the unique monuments of architecture and the creation of holistic understanding of Hrodna history and culture while wandering along its streets and squares: “The Tour of Haradnitsa”, “The Journey along the Castle Street” and others .
Of particular interest for preschoolers, primary school students and other visitors of the Museum are “Batleika” (national puppet show) performances. In addition to traditional productions of Biblical scenes “Christmas Time” and “King Herod” scientific workers prepared the following ones: “Easter Miracle”, “Saint Hubert” , “The Fire in Vitawt’s Palace”. The first night of the latter one was held in 2012 during the First National Forum “Museums of Belarus.”
The theatrical excursion “Marya Apanasawna invites” takes place in the literary department (Museum of Maxim Bahdanovich). On behalf of the poet’s mother visitors get acquainted with Maxim’s childhood, Hrodna period of the Bahdanovichs family life, the circle of Adam Yahoravich’s (father of the poet) acquaintances, household items of the late XIX – early XX centuries.They taste herbal tea and become members of the fashionable games, common in those times.
In 2013 scientific workers of the Museum designed the cycle of museum- pedagogical training “Christmas Meetings at the Museum”. It includes classes for the children of preschool and primary school children with their parents or teachers, and consists of the following classes: “What Is the New Year?”, “Winter Patterns: Paper Cutting-outs”, “Christmas at the Museum”, “Christmas” (the Batleika performance), “Fairy Tales for Santa Claus” (the matinee with the Snow Maiden and Father Frost in the New Castle).
Since 2014 the Museum offers a new animation program with the elements of the excursion about the New Castle «Nominis umbra» (from the Latin “Shadow of the Name”). The New Castle of the XVIII-th century and the life story of the last king of the Polish Commonwealth Stanislaw Awgust Paniatowky is in the spotlight. The story is told by the personal secretary to His Majesty Stanislaw Trembetski. What were the features of the culture of “stanislavowskaya era”? What kind of relationship existed between Stanislaw August and Catherine II? What secrets of the intimate life of the last king did the Italian venturer Giacomo Casanova know? Where and under what circumstances did the King’s abdication of the throne take place? Stanislaw Trembetski reports about everything. King Stanislaw Awgust Paniatowski appears before the audience not only as a statesman and a politician, but as a reformer and a philanthropist.
Visitors of the program are not only spectators but also direct participants: imagining themselves high society guests they can participate in the fashionable dances of the XVIII-th century.
In 2014 the Museum also launched a quest game “In Search of Treasure”. This team game is designed for high school pupils, college students, and students. The task is given to the team – to find a part of Stefan Batory’s treasure which, according to the legend, is hid in the Old Castle. During the game the participants feel themselves historians, ethnographers, archaeologists and detectives.
The whole number of the Museum educational programs, tours, lectures, classes are extremely interesting and varied, thereby bringing to the Museum as a rich environment of historical and cultural heritage of the people, a wide range of visitors not only from Belarus, but also from near and faraway abroad.