Make a Book!


Age group: Year 3 - 6

Available: Monday – Friday

Length: 90 minutes. Please allow more time after your workshop to explore the galleries and public spaces

Group size: minimum 10

Key Skills

Art, Creativity, Visual Literacy

Workshop outline

This is an inspiring and practical workshop in which students will:

  • Develop a basic understanding of the evolution of the book form
  • Make and take away their own bound book, ready for a classroom display at school

The session begins in the Learning Centre where students will be introduced to the history of the book by looking at a variety of images and handling different types of books. Then using the Treasures gallery and public spaces for a ‘treasure hunt’, they will encounter illuminated manuscripts, Eastern printed books, and even a book that’s 5ft tall!

Back in the Learning Centre, students will spend the final hour creating their own book using basic bookbinding techniques. They will decorate the cover using a range of art materials taking inspiration from their findings from the many treasures on display in the Treasures gallery.

Pre-visit activities

  • Discuss the following questions in class or on your journey to the British Library: what is a book for? What does a book look like? Do all books look the same?

Post-visit activities

  • Use the pages of the book you made during the workshop for writing and drawing.
  • Experiment with making other book forms, for example a scroll or concertina book, and think about the relationship between content and form.
  • Research in more detail one item from the Library that interested or inspired you.

Ready to book?