Using Wildlife to Learn

Growing in the Grow Zone!

After a week of Half term, with the Holiday Club watering everything in the poly tunnel, we had lots of plants ready to plant into the Grow Zone!

We had peas, runner beans, French beans, courgettes, pumpkins and broad beans all ready to plant outside. The weather was not ideal… pretty windy and wet, but we battled on and we planted as much as we could. This wet weather will help all the plants settle into our beds and grow well.

The downside is that we have lots of weeds…. as fast as we clear the weeds, they seem to grow back even faster! It’s a lot of work keeping out Grow Zone looking good.



Hunting for trolls…..

As part of the Year 3 ‘Fractured Fairytales’ topic, they have been learning all about the different parts of a fairytale and about some of the characters that are in fairytales.

All the classes had a chance to visit Hartshill Hayes to see some of the interesting evidence that WildlifeKate had found and to see if they could see anything that could suggest there might be a troll living there!

They all needed very good observation skills as everyone crept carefully all around an area that had been pointed out by WildlifeKate.

Their great skills found several pieces of evidence….

1: A den

2.  Interesting grey hair snagged on branches and holly leaves



3. Claw scrapes on a tree


4. A freshly dug holeIMG_0037

5. Some old tatty clothes

The pupils went back to the classrooms armed with lots of evidence for their writing…….

We look forward to seeing how this has informed and improved their writing!!

Grow Zone planting….

We are now motoring with all our planting for the GrowZone  and the poly tunnel has been great as it has meant we have been able to get lots of seeds planted and growing on. Different groups of pupils and different classes have been planting all sorts of different seeds including:

  • Courgettes
  • Runner beans
  • Broad beans
  • French beans
  • Tomatoes
  • Potatoes
  • Peppers
  • img_1800img_1799img_1919img_1801

    We are looking forward to finally getting a lot of these plants out in the Grow Zone bed, when we are sure there are not going to be any more frosts!

One keen pupil took on the weeding of one of the pallet beds… her is his ‘before’ and ‘after’ shot!

4MS all chose some seeds to plant as well.. they will be tending these and planting them out after half term. Today they planted french beans, courgette and broad beans..


Planting up the school entrance school pots

The  school Spring pots in the entrance hall were looking a bit sad as all the bulbs had died. The outdoor explorers set to work on them, emptying the old plants out and then choosing which new plants they would like to put in.

They had to think about how big the plants would grow and what combinations would look good together.

They were soon looking so much better! All that was left was to give them a really good water!

Our Chicks in school!

We have really been enjoying the chicks in school! They are growing SO quickly! When they hatched at the end of the Easter holidays, they were just tiny balls of fluff!…


We all fell in love with them, of course!

The chicks visited all the classes so everyone could experience them first-hand….

There are lots more photos on our Facebook page!

The Photography Club even did a photoshoot with them, setting up little studios. The chicks were more difficult to photograph  than we thought, as they moved around so much!

Class 4PH are weighing the chicks every day and it will be interesting to see how much weight they put on over the coming weeks and months!

They now have proper wing feathers and are beginning to practise flying!! They are very funny to watch!

We will be keeping some of the female chicks and WildlifeKate and Mrs Watt are going to have the others, so they will all have good homes.



The ‘Hour Space’ Team visit Dobbies!

This week, the ‘Hour Space’ group had a trip to Dobbies to kick start our Grow Zone season by looking at what fruits and vegetables we could grow both from seeds and from seedlings.


We started in the seed section. WildlifeKate showed us how to read the information on the back of the packet to find out how many seeds were in the packet, how much they were and also to use the little diagram to see what time of the year they should be planted. We looked at lots of different seeds and found this information.


We then went and looked at all the seedling fruit and veg plants. We found out about all the different things we could grow in school and we chose some to buy…


We took them to the checkout to pay for them, then it was back on the minibus to school!


We will be planting these up in pots in our poly-tunnel and looking after them in there until the weather gets a bit warmer and then they can go outside into our Grow Zone!

Great Grow Wild Kits!

WildlifeKate had applied for some special seed packs for us and they arrived this week! They are from the Grow Wild Campaign.

Grow Wild is the UK’s biggest-ever wild flower campaign, bringing people together to transform local spaces with native, pollinator-friendly wild flowers and plants. 

Supported by the Big Lottery Fund, Grow Wild is the national outreach initiative of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Through us millions of people are doing something positive where they live; connecting with wild flowers, plants and places around them, taking notice of nature, getting active, learning new things and sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm. 

We believe that this simple act of creativity can turn spaces into beautiful, inspiring and colourful wildlife havens; encouraging people to care for and delight in the nature around them.

The eco-committee unpacked the kits and had a look through what was in the packs….

Eco-committee discussed where we might plant these. We are going to put one of our Grow Zone beds over to wild flowers this year. We are also thinking of digging up a few patches of grass and planting some there. We had a walk around school to see potential areas.

There is also an exciting mushroom kit in there! We are going to love growing our own mushrooms and then cooking them!

This looks a really exciting project!

You can find out more about this great scheme on their website at

We will be planting our seeds very soon and looking forward to how we can transform some parts of the school into lovely wild flower patches!… watch this space!



Polytunnel Progress

Our lovely polytunnel is nearly ready for action! It almost blew away last week, but it’s been rescued and securely tethered now!

WildlifeKate has finished the path inside  so we would not get muddy at all.

Then,  the Green Teams and Outdoor Explorers worked hard wheelbarrowing lots of bark chippings to fill the paths and the surrounding areas.


We are excited now it is just about ready. All we need to do is make some work benches inside so we can do some planting and other activities. We will start using it after Easter, when we return from our break and get going in the Grow Zone.IMG_0960

Clay Tree Faces

The Outdoor Explorers this week made some of our school trees come alive with lovely faces, created out of clay and natural materials. Searching the area and the hedgerow for suitable materials, we discovered soft, wavy grasses for hair and berry pips for eyes. We chose twigs for eyebrows and moustaches.

We were rather pleased with our creations…..

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