Virtual visits bring Easton College’s farm into the classroom
16th December 2020 – Tags: Agriculture
Determined not to let the wide-ranging benefits of farm visits be lost during Covid, Easton College’s Agriculture staff and students have begun hosting virtual visits, over live video link, to give local primary school pupils a feel for life on the farm.
In a normal year, the farm at Easton College hosts between 50 and 100 visits by local primary schools. The College works with the schools to tailor each visit according to the year group involved and to maximise links to the curriculum.
For the younger ages, this could involve learning about where their food comes from, the changing seasons, and animal welfare, while the work with older pupils can be more focussed, for example with science and maths days. In all cases, they help develop awareness of the jobs and opportunities that exist in a wide range of land-based careers.
The benefits of the visits are two-way, adding enriching new learning opportunities for Easton College’s students too. With more and more farmers welcoming visitors on to their farms, as part of their own diversification strategies, it is an increasingly important requirement that Agriculture students feel confident and comfortable in dealing with members of the public.
Last week saw the first virtual farm visit take place, with Lecturer William Haire and Skills Tutor Jade Lanham, together with four of their Agriculture students, broadcasting live to Year 1 pupils from Queen’s Hill Primary School in Costessey.
The Easton College staff and students introduced the pupils to some of the cattle at the farm and talked them through the changing requirements of the cows throughout the different seasons.
Following the virtual visit Agriculture Lecturer William Haire said:
It was great to be able to virtually take the college farm to the year ones at Queen’s Hill Primary School. We are incredibly fortunate to have a farm for teaching the food producers of the future, and the opportunity for our students to broaden their skills or develop new ones is vital for their success in our industry.
We really enjoyed talking about what is happening on Easton College farm and responding to some very well thought out questions form our audience who are now looking forward to joining us virtually for a lambing update next month.”
Schools that would like to discuss the possibility of a virtual visit with the Easton College farm can do so by contacting Claire Pigg, School Outreach Coordinator, on email@example.com.