Information for teachers
School children will be provided with an excellent opportunity to understand the role of farming in Devon and its pivotal role in food production. While Devon is a rural county there is still a significant lack of understanding of the importance of farming in children in the large urban centres (over 55% of people live in towns/cities). We have developed a very strong teaching support resource pack (web based) to enable teachers and pupils to do work before & following on from the formal Farmwise Devon day.
The innovative proposition for Farmwise Devon is that it is involving the tenants and farms of the Devon Estate to raise the critical importance of food & farming in the rural economy and giving new entrants to the farming industry to enthuse children to appreciate farming through the eyes of new farm business leaders.
Children need to have an improved understanding to appreciate the importance of farming role and how important farming and local food production are. We will establish indicators to ensure that learning gain has been secured from the event. Specifically we will establish that teachers believe that the event provides a positive learning experience for the children that have attended and positive connections can be made to the curriculum and the event can be harnessed to help improve learning outcomes.
The Government’s proposals for the new National Curriculum from September 2014 has a major aim that schools should prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life. Farm Wise is attempting to do precisely this through increasing knowledge and understanding; developing skills and fostering positive attitudes towards the farming sector in Devon amongst children and young people who are increasingly disconnected from it. From an economic sustainability perspective, if a real sense of local economy is to be engrained in regional populations in the UK, then it must begin with experiences for children and young people such as Farm Wise Devon. Children in Devon already possess the capacity to influence the purchasing patterns of their parents and carers (as evidenced through Fair Trade commodities) and will quickly become adult consumers. Simple messages conveyed in an exciting and engaging manner now through Farmwise will pay real dividends later.
By this we mean that they will not just foster activity and interaction amongst children and young people, but also be appropriately challenging intellectually so that they meet the requirements of National Curriculum subjects such as Science; Geography; Mathematics and English and contribute to the LA’s objectives of improving standards. For example, there is no reason why preparing for and visiting Farmwise should not support the development of more accurate writing or mental arithmetic! All of this is possible and will be achieved through working closely with Babcock LDP education advisers in collaboration with local teachers and schools.