Franklin’s Young Inventors Science Club: Electricity and Magnetism

Saturday 2o November 10am-11:30am. Register here to attend in-person.

Join our science club at Benjamin Franklin House, the London home of the famous Founding Father of the United States who was also a scientist and inventor. You will learn about the experiments carried out by Benjamin Franklin and his British friends as well as trying your hand at practical investigations. This week we will be exploring the core physics topic of electricity and magnetism.

Most suitable for Years 7-9 (ages 11-14) but all ages welcome!  Franklin’s Young Inventors is free to attend but booking is essential.

Parents are welcome to join, however, if you would prefer to drop off and pick up your child(ren) we will ask you to sign a permission form when you arrive.

COVID-19 Safety Precautions:

– We are limiting bookings to 15 people so please book a ticket for each adult and child attending

– Activities will take place in a well-ventilated historic space with hand sanitiser and sanitising wipes available

– All staff and adult visitors are encouraged to wear a face covering

Virtual Alternative

If you would prefer to learn with Benjamin Franklin House remotely, you can sign up here for a 30-minute science class via Zoom at 4.30pm GMT/11.30am EST on Tuesday 16 November. If you would like to recreate the magnetic materials experiment, you will need a magnet and a selection of objects.

Please note that the session will be recorded. A parent, carer or teacher should register on behalf of participants. By registering, participants agree to follow our Online Safety Agreement. For more information, contact our Education Manager.

Funding for Franklin’s Young Inventors has generously been provided by the United States Government and the DAR Walter Hines Page Chapter.

Ben’s Book Club: ‘Incomparable World’ by S I Martin

Tuesday 26 October 2021, 5pm UK/12pm ET. Register to watch the livestream here

Limited tickets will be available to attend in person at Benjamin Franklin House. Book tickets to attend here. Drink Included! 

Join us for the October instalment of Ben’s Digital Book Club, a monthly virtual gathering looking at themes relating to Benjamin Franklin, the 18th century, and American history.

This month S I Martin will do a reading and discuss his book Incomparable World which reimagines 1780s London, showcasing the untold stories of African-American soldiers grappling with their post-war freedom. Bursting with energy and vivid detail, Incomparable World boldly uncovers a long-buried narrative of black Britain.

S. I. Martin is a museums consultant and author, specialising in Black British history and literature. He is the author of several books of historical fiction and non-fiction for teenage and adult readers, including Britain’s Slave Trade (written for Channel 4 to tie in with its documentary of the same name), Jupiter Amidshops, Jupiter Williams and Incomparable World.

You can order a copy or e-book here (UK) or here (US).   

Join us even if you don’t have a chance to read the book by the event date! 

Live History Class for Kids: The British in America

Thursday 14 October, 4.30pm BST/11.30am ET. Register here for this 30-minute class.

Join our virtual history classes on the 2nd Thursday of the month at 4.30pm BST to learn about to key events in early American history. Together we will uncover the past and develop historical skills!

In this class, we’ll find out how Christopher Columbus ‘discovered’ North America in 1492 as well as learning about the first permanent British settlers in the early 17th century. We’ll then put ourselves in their shoes by writing a diary entry.

Activity materials: paper and pencil/pen

Most suitable for KS2 and KS3 (US Grades 2-8) but all ages welcome!

Watch the full class here:

Live History Class for Kids: Pre-Colonial America

Thursday 9 September, 4.30pm BST/11.30am ET. Register here for this 30-minute class.

Join our virtual history classes on the 2nd Thursday of the month at 4.30pm BST to learn about to key events in early American history. Together we will uncover the past and develop historical skills!

In this class, we’ll find out about the different tribes who were living across North America before Europeans arrived on the continent. We’ll discover their customs and ways of life, before creating a piece of art inspired by Native American designs.

Activity materials: paper and colouring pencils/ pens

Most suitable for KS2 and KS3 (US Grades 2-8) but all ages welcome!

Watch the full class here:

Family Day: Strike a Pose!

Tuesday 24 August 11am-12.30pm. Book tickets here.

Benjamin Franklin, like many important figures in history, has featured in paintings and sculpture. Visit the virtual exhibition, Franklin In Portraits, on our Bloomberg Connects Guide to learn about some of the most famous ones. Children will become artists for the morning and create their own portraits using sculpture and collage techniques!

Most suitable for ages 5-11 but all ages are welcome!

COVID-19 Safety Precautions:

– We are limiting bookings to 10 people. Each family group will receive their own pack of materials to use for the crafts

– Activities will take place in a well-ventilated historic space with hand sanitiser and sanitising wipes available

– All staff and adult visitors are encouraged to wear a mask 

Virtual Alternative

If you would prefer to learn with Benjamin Franklin House remotely, you can sign up here for a 30-minute follow-up via Zoom at 3pm BST/10am EDT on Tuesday 24 August. To complete the self-portrait activity at home, you will need: colouring paper/ pens and paper

If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact our Education Manager.

Family Day: Print This!

Tuesday 3 August 11am-12.30pm. Book tickets here.

Did you know that Ben Franklin started out as a printer? Nowadays we think of a printer as something that connects to a computer but the mechanical printing press was cutting edge technology in Franklin’s time. Join us for this fun-filled family day to learn all about 18th Century printing methods and try your hand at some printing of your own!

Most suitable for ages 5-11 but all ages are welcome!

COVID-19 Safety Precautions:

– We are limiting bookings to 10 people. Each family group will receive their own pack of materials to use for the crafts

– Activities will take place in a well-ventilated historic space with hand sanitiser and sanitising wipes available

– All staff and adult visitors are encouraged to wear a mask 

Virtual Alternative

If you would prefer to learn with Benjamin Franklin House remotely, you can sign up here for a 30-minute follow-up via Zoom at 3pm BST/10am EDT on Tuesday 3 August. To complete the printing activity at home, you will need: cardboard, scissors, pva glue, masking tape, paint and paper. 

If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact our Education Manager.

Children’s Summer Fete

Friday 30 July, 11.30am-3.30pm at 49 City Road, London, EC1Y 1AU. Book tickets here.

The annual Children’s Summer Fete, with special guests from the world of heritage including Benjamin Franklin House, the Museum of Methodism & John Wesley’s House, Newington Green Meeting House and Arts & Crafts Hammersmith (a collaboration between the Emery Walker Trust and the William Morris Society), offers a range of fun craft activities for families!

This year, children will have the opportunity to make their own kites with Benjamin Franklin House, pin badges to tell the world about issues they care strongly about with Newington Green Meeting House and a mini folded book with Arts & Crafts Hammersmith. Craft butterflies with The Museum of Methodism & John Wesley’s House and you can also make your own John Wesley and friends! There’ll be a courtyard ‘I-spy’ trail and don’t forget to join a free tour of John Wesley’s House, led by guides in costume.

The Fete will be held in the garden of Wesley’s chapel so bring a picnic to enjoy on the grass or benches! The main entrance is on City Road, however, a more accessible entrance which leads directly into the garden is located on Tabernacle Street. Find out more about the Museum of Methodism & John Wesley’s House here.

The Fete is free to attend but advanced booking is strongly advised to help us plan for the event. Families can join on a drop-in basis throughout the day, however, we will be limiting numbers to 30 at all times. We encourage adult visitors to wear masks and all attendees to maintain a level of distance from staff and other families. Hand sanitiser and sanitising wipes will be readily available on the day.

For more information, contact the Education Manager.

(SOLD OUT) Open House Weekend 2021

Saturday 4 – Sunday 5 September, 10:30am – 4.30pm

Open House London is the capital’s largest annual festival of architecture and design. This annual event allows the public to cross the threshold of many of London’s most interesting buildings, including Grade I listed, 1730s Benjamin Franklin House.

Free entry, but pre-booking required.

Book your free slot here

Festival of Archaeology for Kids: Bones in the Basement

Thursday 22 July, 4.30pm BST/ 11.30am ET. Register here for this 30-minute workshop.

Join us for this special virtual event to celebrate the Festival of Archaeology!

We’ll learn all about the bones that were uncovered in the basement at 36 Craven street in the 1990s. They are remnants of an 18th century anatomy school, run from the garden of the House by Dr William Hewson, while Benjamin Franklin was living here.

We’ll also be hearing from special guest, Dana Goodburn-Brown, who’ll tell us about her work as an archaeological conservator and share some of the artefacts she is currently working on with us.

Most Suitable for KS2-3 (US Grades 2-8) but all ages welcome!

For more information, contact our Education Manager.

Franklin’s Young Inventors: ‘Reaction Time’ with Andrew Hanson

Tuesday 6 July, 4.30pm BST. Register here for this 60-minute virtual workshop.

Franklin’s Young Inventors is our weekly science club for aspiring scientists in Key Stage 3 (ages 11-14). For the final session of the school year, we’re delighted to welcome back special guest Andrew Hanson who will show you how to measure your reaction time!

Andrew Hanson MBE is a scientist working at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) where they measure all sorts of things. In this session, you’ll learn how to measure your reaction time which is very important when taking part in sports.

To join in with the (optional though recommended) practical activity – you will need:

  • 2 people
  • A 30 cm ruler
  • A calculator (this could be on a phone or tablet)
  • A printed copy of this results sheet or a paper and pencil

A parent, carer or teacher should register on behalf of participants. By registering, participants agree to follow our Online Safety Agreement. For more information, contact our Education Manager.

Funding for Franklin’s Young Inventors has been generously provided by the US Embassy London and the DAR Walter Hines Page Chapter: