From the HSIE Faculty

Year 11 Ancient History - The Embalming 

Ancient Egyptian history came alive (pun intended) in Week 4 of Term 3 when our Year 11 Ancient History class was transported back into Old Kingdom Egypt where we became embalmers and symbolically performed the first steps in the mummification process.

Wearing our Anubis masks and various headwear, we recreated the sacred ambience of an embalming worship with incense and candles.  Firstly, we removed the brains of ‘King Julien’ with a hook through his nostril, then, we cut the flank to eviscerate the body of the king.  To authenticate the experience, during the embalming ritual, we read incantations from the Egyptian Book of the Dead.  This reinforced not only the process, but the importance of getting it correct, to ensure the body would enter successfully into the underworld and then the afterlife.  We also tried our hand at Egyptian mummification, attempting to mummify, or desiccate, slices of apple using Natron, also known as sodium carbonate, like what was found naturally in Egypt and used in the mummification process during the Old Kingdom.

Below are comments from the students.

Mrs Rebecca Green
Ancient History Teacher 

Slone - pretty good, would mummify again!

Nick - The Historical Re-enactment of the embalming process was quite intriguing and provided great insight into how the Ancient Egyptians practised their Religious beliefs.

Hunter - the embalming was a great experience as we were able to create a life-like environment by creating unique masks and using candles to create a perfect atmosphere that made this activity very enjoyable and engaging to participate in.

Eloise - The process of embalming practiced by the ancient Egyptians and mummification in class is unique, unfortunately I was not able to experience this process in the flesh! 

Taya- It was really cool to recreate the process of mummification used in Ancient Egypt and experience it first hand. 

Tiabella - The experience of being a first time embalmer was enjoyable and has opened my mind to the process of what the ancient Egyptian people went through to mummify a body. 

Kenna - It was a really fun experience to become an embalmer in ancient Egypt. I love embalming apples, not chicken. Can’t wait to see the apples in 42+ days time. 

Willow - It was a really good to experience what it would have been like to mummify a body as the ancient Egyptians would have in the Old Kingdom.

Year 9 History students Communicate with the Past

Students in Year 9 History are currently studying the Industrial Revolution 1750-1914 and some of the inventions that were developed during this time.  Students have been presenting their research to the class on topics such as the ‘flying shuttle’ (weaving), Jethro Tull’s seed drill, the use of steam engines in transportation and the 1840’s development of the telegraph and Morse code.


Pictured left to right are Year 9 students Lily Blundell and Leilani Cort, communicating using Morse code with a telegraph handset.  This handset was used by the grandfather of their teacher Mr Coverdale during the 1940s, at South Grafton Post Office.

Mr Bryson Coverdale
History Teacher