Up to Upton
17th July 2014
The two Year 5 classes had fabulous weather for their respective trips to the Upton Estate farm. Rob the farmer taught us all about the different crops grown on the farm and their uses, about the growing processes, how they manage and breed their sheep, how they support wildlife and why farming matters. We handled some of the grains which are grown on the farm and noted the differences in looks and uses.
After the classroom teaching, we headed out to walk across some of the 2,000 acres of stunning countryside the Estate encompasses. We were joined by Shelley and Woody, Farmer Rob's wife and dog. Woody was a very firm favourite with many of the children taking turns walking him. We visited some of the fields to see the crops which we had handled in their harvested grain form in the classroom and we worked out how wide the booms on the sprinklers must have been by counting steps in between the tram lines (ask the children to explain it to you!). We even got to see Hector - the biggest sheep on the farm who was born when our school visited two years before and was named by George, one of our Y5 pupils at the time.
We stopped for some 'play time' at the top of a huge grassy hill where the children had a whale of a time running, or rolling down to the bottom. They looked slightly shattered having to climb all the way back up again but it didn't stop lots of them having another go. There's even a picture of Mrs Smith running down the hill in a recreation of the Sound of Music - see if you can spot her!
From here we walked to the lake where we stopped for a drink and biscuits before a final walk to the tractor trailer and a welcome sit down whilst we were driven to our picnic lunch spot.
On the day that 5S visited, one of the pupils was particularly interested in the tractor, so Rob offered him a chance to sit in the cab whilst the engine was off. Of course this sparked a lot of interest and soon a queue was forming, which ended with Mrs Smith and Mrs Gibson having a turn! It was incredible how high up the cab was, even for the adults. We were then driven back to the farm ready to return to school. Both days were hot with lots of walking (around 2 miles) but everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves. The children were excellent company for one another and for the adults and we all learned a lot about the foods we eat and the land around us. Back in class the children have been asked to write thank you letters to Rob, each putting in their favourite thing about the day - they certainly have a lot of experiences to choose from.