2019 has seen over 200 children from four Lincolnshire schools successfully involved with our Mayfly in the Classroom pilot project. This project has given us the opportunity to engage primary school children aged 4 – 11 years with their local water course to experience the outdoor classroom first-hand.
This cross-curricular project enables the children to pull on their wellies and actually get into the stream to explore the river habitat for themselves, undertaking kick sampling to discover the variety of freshwater invertebrates that call the stream home.
Any mayfly nymphs are identified, with the help of classification keys, collected and returned to school where the children can work together to construct their very own aquariums to house the mayflies. The children are then responsible for daily monitoring, recording temperature, water levels etc until the mayflies emerge as flying adults.
Led by our enthusiastic and experienced Project Officer, the sessions enable the children to get out of the classroom and their comfort zone whilst learning about the unique life cycle of the mayfly. They also learn of their importance as a critical part of the food chain, as well as indicators of pollution and poor water quality. Additional activities were made available to help reinforce learning.
This simple but extremely effective project has been positively received by all of the pilot schools with feedback ranging from ‘very good’ to ‘outstanding’. Heighington School commented ‘class absolutely loved this activity, it tied beautifully into our curriculum’. They are already planning future activities for the class ‘especially when they have understood so much about their very local environment’.
We look forward to securing further funding to enable us to roll out Mayfly in the Classroom across more of the county’s primary schools.
For more information about this or other school sessions on offer please contact our Project Officer Gail Talton firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 07927 156155