A day down on the farm - but with the farm brought in to the school playground, gave pupils at one Isle primary school plenty of food for thought.
To give young pupils an insight in to farming and the processes that take place to allow food to reach shops and supermarkets, and ultimately our tables, the National Farmers’ Union is heading an initiative in schools.
The NFU in Lincolnshire and the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society have embarked on a joint campaign to encourage farmers to take a tractor into their local schools and talk to pupils about what they do, and the food chain that results from their growing and harvesting operations across the seasons.
Primary-aged children are given the opportunity to see a tractor close-up, even to sit on it in some instances, and to put their own questions directly to a food-producing farmer from the region in which they live.
St Martin’s C of E Primary School at Owston Ferry welcomed visitors in to school to find out all about farming. Class four teacher Joanna Francis said: “Farming plays an important part in all our lives; without it our ability to feed the world would be threatened. The role of farming is increasingly topical in an era when food security, climate change and energy security is a global concern.
“With this is mind, on Thursday March 3, Mr Thornton, who is a local farmer in Owston Ferry, visited St Martin’s Primary School. Activities were planned throughout the whole day focusing on where our food originally comes from.
“The enthusiastic children, from reception class to year six, were able to get very close to a big red tractor. The tractor, which was kindly provided by Farmstar Ltd, housed the latest thinking in agricultural technology.”
She added: “I would like to say a big thank-you to Patrick Thornton for giving up his own time to share his expertise and knowledge of farming with the children of St Martin’s Primary.”
The exercise proved a big hit with pupils and the campaign is making an impact across the region, as pupils learn first-hand about farming and why it is so important.