Freakishly Frightening Fungi From Tasmania!

Updated: Jul 6, 2019

Usually if you are visiting the forest, you wouldn't come across evil spirits, dead body parts or mummified corpses but if you are exploring the forests of Tasmania... Watch Out! Because you just might come across something terrifying! The Freakishly Frightening Fungi From Tasmania, is Box 1 of a suite of interactive fungi educational kits being developed for the worldwide pilot project Museum in a Box.

The Freakishly Frightening Fungi From Tasmania kit contains a collection of short audio clips (approx.up to 2 minutes each), and 2D image cards that work in tandem with the box to explore the creepy customers of fungi lurking in the forest - the ones that bleed, kill and are just plain creepy!! You don't need to have a 'box' in order to use the cards, you can print out the cards for viewing whilst playing the soundtracks off your electronic device.

Postcard files are .pdf and audio files are .mp3

Download the free audio and postcard files here


Organisations such as the Smithsonian InstitutionBritish Library, British Museum, and the UK National History Museum have previously been digitising and sharing their museum collections via the Museum in a Box system with fantastic results. It has been a great way to make available, low cost copies of valuable collection items to the general public in an innovative, fun and interactive way. Due to this success, a new pilot project was launched in 2019 - with 40 test pilots from around the world involving universities, schools, museums, libraries, artists and cultural organisations, being asked to create collections. This is how the Freakishly Frightening Fungi from Tasmania project came about - the first in a series that will be created to provide educational resources about fungi to a world wide audience!

Map showing the 40 test pilots for museum in a box around the world. Australia has 2 pilots - me and one in Adelaide

Not just a pretty box!

The clear acrylic box contains a speaker, WIFI and a Raspberry Pi computer to read near-field communication (NFC) tags that are placed onto 2D + 3D objects so they can be read by the box.

Creating a collection for the box supports important traditional and digital literacy skills, including competencies across STEM areas. Participants learn skills in design, planning, recording audio files, creating digital 2D/3D images, understanding and connecting the NFC tags to the objects, & 3D printing as they create their collections for the box. The process of creating a collection and deciding what to talk about is an innovative hands-on way to facilitate deeper learning of any subject!

Shareable anywhere in the world!

Collections made available by participating museums, artists, libraries community groups etc., can also be shared and downloaded and printed by anyone, anywhere in the world to either be used with their own box, or as standalone digital files. This means that a school group on the other side of the world might download the Tasmanian fungi in a box collection for listening and viewing!

Future Plans

If you would like to know more about the Museum in a Box project, and perhaps would like to put a collection together with your school, museum or community group using the box, please contact me as I would be happy to discuss possible future projects with you.

Projects suit ages 6+ and can be used to explore student studies in the school curriculum around STEM subjects.

The Freakishly Frightening Fungi From Tasmania kit is designed to work best with the Museum in a box device as part of the pilot project, however it is not necessary to buy a box in order to use the kit as long as you are happy to just print out the cards and play the audio files.

Stay Tuned!! as the next kits will contain 3D printed versions photographed from real Tasmanian fungi to bring additional tactile learning opportunities as well!!

Where the magic happens - the BOX!

A selection of image cards from the Tasmanian fungi in a box project

Tasmanian fungi in a box

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Heather Elson

M: PO BOX 105 Franklin TAS 7113



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