Archaeology in the Rocks


Susannah Place Museum Excursion Information

Key Information

Cost (GST free)
From $200 for up to 15 students. See below for the full cost scale.
2 hours
Session Offered
Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday during Term 1 only
Maximum Students
35 per session
Supervision ratios

The supervision ratio is 1:10 for primary groups and 1:15 for secondary groups. Teachers and parents attend free of charge at these ratios. One carer per student with special needs will be admitted free of charge.

Additional Visitor Costs

Each additional visitor will be charged at the concession rate of $8.

About the program

Students investigate the layered history of this terrace of four houses built in 1844 to learn about the processes of conservation, restoration and interpretation. They consider why curators have chosen to interpret particular time periods in the museum and how archaeology, oral history and documentary evidence have been combined.

In the restored c1915 corner shop, students work like historians, using source material to reconstruct the shop’s history, assessing physical evidence, analysing documents and photographs, and listening to oral history extracts. They also watch a short film exploring the cultural significance of the site through the stories of children who once lived there, and see different examples of preservation techniques in use.

During the program students also visit Parbury Ruins – an archaeological site in The Rocks where the foundations of a cottage built between 1815 and 1823 are conserved beneath a modern building. While there students work in groups to practice their skills in historical archaeology; analysing physical evidence and documentary evidence in order to answer inquiry questions.

Cost scale

Up to 15 students: $200
Up to 30 students: $395
Up to 45 students: $595
Up to 60 students: $795

Confirmation, payment & cancellation

You can alter your booking numbers up until 7 days prior to your visit.
We will call you a week before your booking to confirm final numbers and requirements.
You will be invoiced for the full cost of your program a week prior to your booking.
Payment can be made by Credit Card, EFTPOS or cheque (payable to Historic Houses Trust of NSW).
Cancellations made within 7 days of a booking will incur the full cost for the program.
Cancellations made within 2 weeks of your visit will be invoiced for 50% of the total booking.
Cancellations must be made in writing. 

Curriculum links

Stage 6 Modern History

The Nature of Modern History

The Investigation of Historic Sites and Sources

Students investigate:

  • the nature, range and importance of archives to historians of modern history and the digitisation of archival records
  • the reconstruction of historic sites and site chronology using evidence
  • the contribution of archaeological and scientific techniques in the investigation of the past, including site surveys, excavation, forensic examination, DNA analysis and exhumation
  • the contribution of historic sites and oral testimony to an understanding of events, developments and life in the past

MH11-6 analyses and interprets different types of sources for evidence to support an historical account of argument

MH11-7 discusses and evaluates differing interpretations and representations of the past

MH11-10 discusses contemporary mthods and issues involved in the investigation of modern history

Stage 6 Ancient History (Preliminary course)

Investigating the Past: History, Archaeology and Science

P3.2 Identifies relevant problems of sources in reconstructing the past

P3.3 Comprehends sources and analyses them for their usefulness and reliability

P3.4 Identifies and accounts for differing perspectives and interpretations of the past

P3.5 Discusses issues relating to ownership and custodianship of the past

Plan Your Visit

  • Please plan to arrive before the start time of your booked program to allow for cloaking, toilet visits and/or a refreshment break for the students. If you arrive late, some elements and activities may need to be cut from the program to keep to the scheduled finish time.
  • Large groups will be divided up into smaller groups for activities in the museums
  • Bags, food and drinks are not permitted in the museums and cloaking facilities are provided.
  • Photography policies vary between the museums so please ask a member of staff for details.
  • Teachers and carers are required to remain with their groups at all times.
  • Disciplining students remains the responsibility of teachers and carers accompanying the group.
  • Please let us know before your visit if any of your students have special needs or learning difficulties so we can plan to accommodate their needs during the visit.

Susannah Place

58–64 Gloucester Street, The Rocks, Sydney, NSW 2000
Phone 02 8239 2211
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Available Term 1 only

Booking Contact

Susannah Place

58–64 Gloucester Street, The Rocks, Sydney, NSW 2000
Phone 02 8239 2211

The Archaeology in the Rocks program complemented the 'Investigating the Past: History, Archaeology and Science’ topic so well!

The Susannah Place Museum visit was a valuable and enriching experience for my Year 11 Ancient History students as they were involved in the practical, hands-on application of what they had learnt in class about the role of historians and archaeologists in investigating and reconstructing the past.

Ancient History teacher – Sefton High School