Penlee House Gallery & Museum, Penzance
The artistic heart of West Cornwall's history

Workshop Programmes

Education workshops

Penlee House Gallery & Museum offers a varied and exciting programme of workshops for schools and groups of all ages and abilities, linked to the National Curriculum. We also offer outreach sessions if you are unable to come to the gallery.

All of our workshops and outreach sessions are FREE.

We are very happy to tailor our workshops to suit your requirements.  If you are studying a particular topic that is not listed here, please contact Zoe Burkett, Education and Outreach Officer, on 01736 363625 or email and we will do our best to help.

All workshops need to be pre-booked, by telephoning or emailing the Gallery. Due to the size of the galleries, we are unable to take groups bigger than 30 children at any one time, but if your group is larger, we can arrange to split times or book more than one workshop. 

For further information about each workshop, including curriculum links and learning objectives, please click on the link within the description.  

WORKSHOP - Bronze, Iron and Stone: Prehistoric Cornwall

Suitable for: Key Stage 2

Duration: full day or half day

Penlee House is not just about paintings! Our archaeology collection is ideal for studying the long distant past and has original artifacts from the Stone, Bronze and Iron Ages. 

Explore the archaeology of West Cornwall in our prehistoric workshop and find out how life changed from the Stone Age to the Iron Age.  Listen to the story of Bryallen, the Wise Woman from the Iron Age village of Chysauster, see amazing original artifacts, handle replica objects and take part in some prehistoric-inspired crafts. 

This workshop can be linked with a visit to Chysauster Iron Age Village, just outside Penzance (Chysauster is run by English Heritage). 

National Curriculum links: History - 'changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age'/a local history study.

Early Years Storytelling

Suitable for: EYFS/Key Stage 1

Duration: approximately 1 hour

Explore the paintings of the Newlyn artists through traditional storytelling.

To download our information sheet about these workshops, click here

Old Toys

Suitable for: Foundation Stage/Key Stage 1

Duration: 1 - 1 and 1/2 hours

This hands-on workshop allows children to explore and play with toys from the past. See old toys from Penlee's collections and use our handling collection of replica Victorian and later toys to explore differences between new and old. 

To download our information sheet about this workshop, click here

Betsy Lanyon - Life in Newlyn

Suitable for: Key Stage 1/Key Stage 2

Duration: 1-1 and 1/2 hours

Travel back in time to 1890 and meet Betsy Lanyon, a Newlyn fishwife and artist's model. Learn about her life and work, and handle real Victorian objects. Spot Betsy in the Newlyn School paintings, have a go at sketching her and learn some words in the Cornish language.  

To download our information sheet about this workshop, click here

School is Out!

Suitable for : Key Stage 1/Key Stage 2

Duration: 1-1 and 1/2 hours

Using the painting 'School is Out' by Elizabeth Armstrong as a starting point, explore the life of a Victorian school child through storytelling and role play. Using objects and costume, children can have a taste of a Victorian school day, and teachers can get involved too!

To download our information sheet about this workshop, click here

Art workshops

In addition to our schools workshops, Penlee House runs regular activities for families on Saturday afternoons and children's school holiday workshops.  For more information, see the What's On page or telephone the Gallery on 01736 363625.