With eyes wide open and minds full of imagination, the children of Funtington Primary School waited patiently to begin their tour of The Woodhorn Group farm. Once introductions were made to Stuart the farm manager and Richard the tractor driver, the 28 children bundled into our tractor trailer to embark on their school visit on the morning of 20th October 2015.
The children spent the first part of their morning on a hedgerow safari. With a picture list of what animals and plants to look for in one hand and an insect viewing container in the other, they went in groups to see what they could discover. With the help of Stuart and Richard who pointed out berries and plants and dug into timber logs to catch insects, the children were thrilled with what they found. Competing with one another at who caught the biggest spider, or who found a baby snail, it was clear to see that the children enjoyed the hands on experience. Having released what they had caught, they were allowed to keep the viewing containers, which got them all enthusiastic about what they could find in the gardens at their school.
The next part of the tour saw the students get up close and personal with our dairy herd. They learnt about the constitution of the feed, viewed the milking process, but most importantly got to interact with the cows themselves. This is a great time to visit The Woodhorn Group, as autumn is our calving season. Straight away the children started picking out names for the calves and really enjoyed engaging with them, even the teachers got involved too.
Kerry Hill and Karen Martell, both teachers at Funtington Primary School commented that ‘the farm visit is a valuable experience to the children as it’s really interactive. The children loved the tractor ride and really enjoyed getting hands on in the hedgerow safari. It helped that the school visit was very well organised and had approachable staff to make the children’s experience that much more enjoyable’.
After a fun filled morning the children settled down for lunch on the trailer and gossiped about what they all learnt that day. They enjoyed coming close to nature and were all eager to get back and use their insect viewing containers. The day was organised by Stuart our farm manager and he commented that ‘school visits are really enjoyable to organise as you’re taking the children back to the natural classroom’.
The Woodhorn Group farm tour is not only an enjoyable day out for any child, but it’s also a valuable learning experience. If you would like for your school to come and visit then please get in touch on 01243 781730 and bring nature back into your classroom.