Discover the archaeology of Ireland's earliest people on this chronological journey which takes you from the Mesolithic to the Late Bronze Age.
On this page, you can find out what you can do at the Museum, in the classroom and online
All groups who are coming to the Museum must book their visit with the Bookings Office.
Prehistoric Ireland Tour
On this tour you can:
Discover how people in Mesolithic Ireland caught their fish with our 9,000 year old fish-trap
Examine some of the earliest art in Ireland with the mysterious carvings on our Neolithic passage tomb
Compare Neolithic and Bronze Age burial techniques
Hear how our first metalworkers turned gold from the soil into stunning neck ornaments shaped like half moons
Learn how experts discovered which type of shield was best for prehistoric battle through Experimental Archaeology
Key Curriculum Strands
How we find out about the past
The work of the historian
Our roots in ancient civilization
Time and chronology
Technology and innovation
Continuity and change over time
Life, society, work and culture in the past
On request, this tour can include a hands-on session with a replica Mesolithic fish-trap and replica prehistoric pottery.
Maximum 30 per group. Duration 50 minutes.
Tours and workshops should be booked at least two weeks in advance, via the Bookings Office.
To make the most of your visit, we recommend that you plan activities for your students to complete.
In The Classroom
Here are some suggested follow up activities:
Create your own versions of our decorated prehistoric pots with air-drying clay using Neolithic pinch-pot and coil-building techniques.
Gather a selection of shapes from Neolithic passage tomb art and examine them. Divide the class into groups and debate what the different meanings might be.
Create a timeline using drawings inspired by your Museum visit, such as Mesolithic arrowheads, Bronze Age lunulae or shields. Add to this timeline as more topics are covered.
Useful link: Archaeology in the ClassroomLinks to external website
We are continually improving and adding to our online resourses.
Looking for information on exhibitions and collections?
Take a look around:
Prehistoric Ireland Exhibition
Bronze Age Gold Collection
A History of Ireland in 100 Objects
Looking for a particular object? Try our Artefacts Search
Information on the Mesolithic Clowanstown Fish-Trap:
Fishtraps article (1.07 MB, Adobe PDF)
Seanda article on fish traps (2.08 MB, Adobe PDF)