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Year 6 Visit Local Sustainable Farm

As part of our work with the charity LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming), and our bid to become a ‘demonstration school’, Year 6 children visited a local farm, South Haylands, on a wet and windy Thursday this week.

The children learned all about the meat and dairy farm; how the business works, the importance given to farming sustainably and how animals are cared for, including the plans for calving in a couple of weeks. There was so much to learn and do, including the disinfectant of wellies and hand washing, all part of protecting us as children and adults and protecting the livestock from contamination. Lucy, the farmer, explained the balance of making land more productive whilst also meeting environmental targets, for example in the planting of grasses, and linked and compared things on this local farm to the children’s recent curriculum learning, including their topic on Brazil. Children were fascinated to hear that the cattle at the farm are fed only on local grass, not on things like soya grown abroad (eg Brazil), therefore ensuring that farming is sustainable with low food miles.
Science learning from class was put into practice as we heard about other local farms capturing methane from slurry pits and how Cornwall is leading the way in this area. Also, we heard about how the farm is using herbal lays to re-add nitrogen to soil – all supporting a carbon neutral approach.
What an afternoon of learning! We even heard from Lucy and Gary at the farm about all of the different careers and professions linked to farming, for example ‘agronomists’ who help test and advise on soil health (eg 100+ trailer loads of dung to improve soil fertility in fields).

A huge thank you to Lisa from LEAF and Lucy and Graham from South Haylands farm – their FaceBook comments below were lovely. We have other farm trips for other classes in school organised for later in the year – all linked to our curriculum and of course further expanding on the learning experiences children have from our own school and community farm onsite.