March events @ Natural History Museum

March 1, 2010toMarch 31, 2010

Nature Live in the Attenborough Studio

  • Discover more about the work of some of the Museum’s 350 scientists and world class experts in a daily programme of informal, lively discussions in the Attenborough Studio. These live, interactive events allow you to quiz scientists about their work, see and touch real specimens and have your say in controversial and provocative debates using cutting-edge technologies to fully immerse yourself in the natural world.
  • The Attenborough Studio is the Darwin Centre’s hi-tech, purpose-built venue where an innovative and free daily programme of films and live events bring together for the first time real Museum specimens and scientists, live animals and footage of creatures in their natural habitat.
  • Daily at 14.30 and weekends at 12.30 and 14.30

Natural Diversity Season

  • Nature Live is celebrating the amazing diversity of planet Earth as part of the International Year of Biodiversity 2010. We will journey around the world and through our immense collections to discover the work our scientists do to study and record our planet’s natural diversity and view some amazing specimens that are rarely seen. Join us as we venture from the depths of space to the bottom of the oceans and from the highest mountains to the largest forests. Discuss why thousands of minerals, millions of mammals and billions of insects matter and how your actions can help shape the world around you.
  • Every Tuesday and Thursday at 14.30

Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year

  • See the environment around you with new eyes and be inspired by the latest winning entries in the world’s most prestigious showcase of wildlife photography.
  • The exhibition showcases the very best photographic images of nature, giving visitors an insight into the beauty, drama and variety of our natural environment.
  • The winning images are displayed in a stunning exhibition launched at the Natural History Museum that then tours the UK and overseas. Through an interactive installation, visitors to the exhibition can find out what the judges, scientists and photographers think about particular images. In addition, visitors can select their favourite image or choose from a selection of prints to have in their own home.
  • Until 11 April
  • 10.00–17.50

Illegal Wildlife Trade

  • Did you know some of your holiday souvenirs could be endangering wildlife? The trade in animals and plants should not threaten their survival and combating the illegal wildlife trade is a job for every one of us. Come and see how endangered species materials confiscated by UK customs are brought to the Museum for identification by our scientists.
  • 2 March
  • 14.30

Wonders of the Collections: The Giant Squid

  • With a mollusc of such monster proportions our curators have their arms full. Hear the story of how a creature more often the topic of myth and legend became part of the collection. Dubbed Archie, hear how it was preserved for future study and how ongoing research is revealing more about these mysterious creatures. Plus, discover more about our latest display specimen, the colossal squid. Could this creature be even larger than the giant squid? Join us to find out.
  • 13 March
  • 12.30 and 14.30

Tadpoles

  • What are tadpoles? Put simply they are the larval stage of a frog or toad, but the apparent simplicity of their shape masks a complex structure that changes rapidly during development. Join Museum zoologist Barry Clarke for a fascinating survey of the world’s tadpoles, with real specimens from our collection on display. Discover how these seemingly defenceless animals mange to survive and how they make the radical leap into fully grown frogs.
  • 20 March
  • 12.30 and 14.30

One For All, And All For One

  • Colonies of bryozoans and corals potentially live forever. Individual modules making up a colony are clones that act together to ensure its survival. Sometimes different modules are responsible for particular functions, including feeding, reproduction and defence. Join Museum palaeontologists for more about these beautiful and fascinating creatures and how they have evolved.
  • 25 March
  • 14.30

Hands-On Nature: Oceans

  • Visit the handling trolley in Lasting Impressions and take a closer look at some interesting specimens with the help of our science educators.
  • Every Saturday and Sunday
  • 14.00–17.00

Crafty Nature: Fabulous Fossils

  • Roll up your sleeves and join artists for exciting craft workshops. Use interesting materials to make fun creations based on natural history themes. This workshop takes place in Fossil Marine Reptiles and is suitable for children under seven.
  • 6 and 20 March
  • 11.00–13.00 and 14.00–16.00

Natural Puppet Tales

  • Join our storyteller and her puppets in lively storytelling workshops based on discovering amazing facts about the natural world. The workshop is best suited to families with children aged seven and under.
  • 28 March
  • 12.00 and 13.30

Dino Snores

  • Dino Snores brings together a new programme of activities to allow you to investigate the Museum’s nocturnal nature and learn more about extinct creatures and deadly bugs. Take a torch-lit tour into the darkest depths of the galleries to discover clues and solve a nature puzzle. At midnight, snuggle down for the night in the iconic Central Hall and shadow of the Diplodocus. In the morning, breakfast will be served before more activities. You will be released back into the wild at 09.50.
  • Dino Snores is suitable for children aged 8–11. Each booking must include a minimum of five children in the group to be accompanied by a maximum of three adults. Visitors must have a proper meal before attending and bring a snack for later in the evening. In the morning a basic breakfast will be provided.
  • 13 March 2010 – From 19.00 to 14 March 09.50
  • Children £45, adults free – Members and Patrons £40.50

Exhibitions

Darwin Centre
Journey deep into the heart of the eight-storey cocoon to glimpse the working life of our scientists in collections and laboratories, quiz scientists about their cutting-edge research or view specially created natural history footage – all opening up the hidden world of the Natural History Museum’s scientific collections and research.  The new £78 million Darwin Centre is a state-of-the-art scientific research and collections facility that can be used by over 200 scientists at a time. It is also an awe-inspiring new public space inviting you to explore the natural world in an exciting and innovative way. The architectural highlight is a 65-metre-long, eight-storey-high cocoon – the largest sprayed concrete, curved structure in Europe. It safeguards the 17 million insect and three million plant specimens held inside the building.

Experience:

  • Cocoon – travel through the Cocoon experience deep into the heart of the collections to glimpse the working life of our scientists. See the previously hidden world of scientific research through viewing decks, video, intercom and over 40 high-tech installations and hands-on interactive activities. Visitors will be able to interact with learning activators stationed throughout Cocoon and find out more about scientific techniques used in labs at Science Focus activity points near the viewing decks.
  • NaturePlus – take a NaturePlus card with you to personalise your journey around Cocoon. Use it to collect your favourite exhibits and specimens – from butterflies to a rhino beetle – and then discover more online at home, where you can also join in discussions with Museum scientists.
  • Attenborough Studio – the Attenborough Studio is a state-of-the-art communication centre where innovative technology, Museum specimens, live animals, spectacular natural history film footage and Museum scientists come together to create an inspiring programme of free daily films and live events.
  • Climate Change Wall – interact with the unmissable 12 metre wall of screens displaying films and interactive graphics that spotlight Earth’s changing climate and how the Museum’s research informs global efforts to understand that change.
  • Angela Marmont Centre for UK Biodiversity – a new resource centre for people or organisations with an interest in UK natural history. Much of the Museum’s UK collections are available here for amateur naturalists to study and visitors are encouraged to bring in their own finds and meet the Centre’s dedicated enquiries staff.
  • Architecture – explore this architecturally stunning building with breathtaking views from the eight-storey cocoon over the west London skyline, into the Wildlife Garden and up close to the Museum’s original terracotta façade.

Tree

  • TREE is a cross-section of an entire 200-year-old oak tree, cut lengthways, including the roots, trunk and branches and inserted into the ceiling of a gallery behind Central Hall. At more than 17 metres long, it is one of the largest specimens at the Museum. TREE is inspired by Charles Darwin’s iconic tree of life sketch, representing evolution, from his transmutation notebook B.
  • In 2008, 10 leading contemporary artists were invited to submit responses to celebrate Darwin’s two hundredth birthday and 150 years since the publication of On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. The resulting exhibition of proposals, Darwin’s Canopy, was the first event in the Darwin200 programme, a nationwide series of events celebrating Darwin’s ideas and their impact around his two hundredth birthday. TREE was selected for commission from the 10 proposals and is also part of the Darwin200 celebrations.
  • Daily 10.00–17.50
  • Free

Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year
See the environment around you with new eyes and be inspired by the latest winning entries in the world’s most prestigious showcase of wildlife photography.  Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year is owned by the Natural History Museum and BBC Wildlife Magazine. It is the international leader in the artistic representation of the natural world. The exhibition showcases the very best photographic images of nature, giving visitors an insight into the beauty, drama and variety of our natural environment.  The winning images are displayed in a stunning exhibition launched at the Natural History Museum that then tours the UK and overseas. Through an interactive installation, visitors to the exhibition can find out what the judges, scientists and photographers think about particular images. In addition, visitors can select their favourite image or choose from a selection of prints to have in their own home.

  • To 11 April 2010, 10.00–17.50
  • Admission:  adult, Gift Aid admission £9*concession, Gift Aid admission £4.50* family, Gift Aid admission £24* (up to two adults andthree children); free for Members, Patrons and children aged three and under

Daily family activities

Explorer backpacks

  • Grab your binoculars, put on your backpack and take a mini-adventure around the Museum. Filled with pens, paper, games and activities, these bright red backpacks are a fun way to explore the Museum’s galleries. Choose from themes including birds, mammals, oceans, primates, monsters and Wildlife Garden.
  • Suitable for under sevens.
  • Daily 10.00–17.00
  • £25 refundable deposit required
  • Please collect from the Central Hall information desk

Family Earth Lab

  • For families with children aged six and above. Drop in to Earth Lab and join our science educators to explore the wonder of fossils, rocks and minerals. Sessions are set up to allow everyone to join in at their own level and there is a range of fun activities to choose from.
  • Weekends and school holidays, 11.00–13.00

Dippy floor puzzle

  • Enjoy the wonder of our 26-metre-long Diplodocus – affectionately named Dippy – with a soft toy floor puzzle.
  • It’s free and is available in the Central Hall underneath the Diplodocus dinosaur.
  • Suitable for children aged seven and under. Complete the puzzle and get a funky Dippy sticker.
  • Daily 12.00–17.00 (times may vary)

Bookasaurus

  • Grab a funky fabric-based dinosaur book and follow a trail through the Museum, finding out what dinosaurs ate, how sharp their teeth were, what dinosaur footprints are like and lots more.
  • Suitable for families with children under five.
  • Daily
  • 10.00–17.00 (times may vary)

Jurassic Ark

  • Take the Jurassic Ark trail, gathering clues and discovering the animals that lurked in the shadow of the dinosaurs.
  • This fun-filled family activity pack includes code-breaking activities, a crossword, word search, stickers, free poster, eraser and pencil. When you’ve finished, you can claim a 10 per cent discount in the Museum Shop.
  • Daily 10.00–17.00
  • £1.50, available from the Museum Shop

Focus Points

  • Don’t miss our Focus Point handling trolleys. Whatever your age, come and explore real specimens with the help of our enthusiastic volunteers, using different natural history-themed activities.
  • Tuesday–Thursday, 10.45–14.00
  • Saturday–Sunday, 11.15–15.00
  • Creepy Crawlies, The Power Within, Mammals

Learning activators

  • Look out for our friendly volunteers roving the galleries. They encourage visitors of all ages to discover more about the natural world, using Museum specimens from mammal skulls to fossils.
  • Tuesday–Thursday, 10.45–14.00
  • Saturday–Sunday, 11.15–15.00

Investigate Centre

  • Get a feel for how scientists work by having a go yourself.
  • Bring your own questions, or use some of ours in this hands-on science space. Come and explore hundreds of real nature specimens that form the evidence for your exploration of scientific ideas.
  • The Investigate Centre encourages you to look closely at real objects using the many tools provided to find out more and become a scientist for the day.
  • Weekends and school holidays, 11.00–17.00 (last entry 16.30)
  • Monday–Friday in term time, 14.30–17.00 (last entry 16.30)

For more information:
See the Fun Kids review on the Natural History Museum