The lovely ‘Cats’ class from Cropthorne-with-Charlton CE First school came to the farm today. Our topic today was about ‘harvest’ from the farm. We started the morning discussing the different foods which are sourced from dairy cows and at lunchtime the children were offered samples of red, green and blue topped milk. Green was the most preferred. Our discussion moved on from dairy cows to Autumn and the children told me the things they expected to see on the farm in September.
At the start of our farm walk, we looked at the wheat grains in the farm shed, ready to feed the calves in the morning. We thought about why we didn’t see any yellow wheat plants out in the fields and why the yellow straw is so useful.
We then split into five teams. Each team had a bucket and were challenged to fill the bucket with lots of items from nature. The children were fantastic at finding interesting leaf shapes, grass heads, hedgerow berries and acorns. In the orchard we looked at the fruit trees and found different sized and varying colours of apples and pears. The children enjoyed picking the almost black ‘Worcester Black’ pears.
After lunch the five teams were challenged to use the materials in the play wood and the contents of their buckets to make a picture of a tree. The results were fantastic and a really good activity for the children and the competitive adults!
I had a really lovely afternoon with a group of ‘nuture hub’ pupils from a local primary school. We spent a very relaxed afternoon on an autumn farm walk, collecting items from nature. It was a great opportunity for the children to learn whilst doing, take the activity at their own pace and have time away from the confines and busy atmosphere of school. The staff attending took the opportunity to observe the children in a new environment with an unknown adult (me!).
The lovely early years and reception children from Dormer House School, came out to Sandfield Farm today. The weather was perfect. The children were very good when it came to thinking of ideas of what might be dangerous on a real farm. We had a lovely walk, through the long grass to look at the wild bird mix cover crop. The children were very good at finding small seeds for the small birds and large seeds for the large birds. We then walked through the wheat stubble and heard the sound of the stubble crunching underneath are feet.
The children were fascinated by the hole dug by the badgers looking for beetles, worms and slugs. Later in the day we found another hole made by the badgers for their latrine! Once in the field with the calves, the children were excellent at standing still and quietly, they loved the challenge of seeing how close the calves would come to them. The children found it hard to believe that the animals infront of them were only calves, rather than fully grown cows.
As the weather was so wonderful we thought we would see which creatures we could catch in the pond. Most of the mini beasts caught in the pond were waterboatmen. As we walked back for lunch we looked at the different berries in the autumn hedgerow.
The children loved the mud in the playwood after lunch.