Horticulture at Woodlands School.

Pupils have the opportunity to learn about horticulture at Woodlands School, they have a selection of raised beds and a large PolyTunel. Produce grown is used by the school kitchen and Hospitality and Catering Department. Small groups of pupils care for the plants grown in the garden and maintain the grass area on a regular basis. Chickens are also an important part of the school garden, they are provided with a secure run and coop, pupils feed, water to ensure healthy chickens.

Gardening provides opportunities for increasing scientific knowledge and understanding, and improves literacy and numeracy, but also improves pupils’ confidence, resilience and self-esteem. It gives them a sense of responsibility, and fosters positive behaviour, particularly for those with behavioural and learning difficulties. What better way can there be to engage children actively in their learning, to support healthy living and sustainable development – and to make learning fun? A section of a short report by Dame Gillian Pugh Chair, Cambridge Primary Review and the National Children’s Bureau on the very successful RHS Campaign for School Gardening.

Woodlands School through ‘LEAF’ (Linking Education and Farming) and ‘FACE’ (Farming and Countryside Education) FaceTime a farmer. The school has been paired with Green Meadow Community Farm in Torfaen, South Wales.

This is an opportunity for pupils to experience farming first hand as the farmer is able to talk to the class over Skype or FaceTime, from a location on his farm – either in the field, the barn, tractor, harvester etc. For example, farmers are able to talk about soil, animal welfare, seasons, the farm as a business etc.