Children thoroughly enjoyed and understood the content. Each activity was well paced with no overload of information. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this activity to other teachers and schools.’                              Maes y Morfa.

All our programmes are specially designed by us to support and enhance STEM learning, the skills framework, ESDGC, Healthy Schools and/or Eco Schools through active learning experiences.

Please have a look at our our Primary School newsletter for Winter 2013  If you want to know how our programmes link into the curriculum, have a look at our Programme curriculum links

Now here are the regular programmes that we offer.

Life Cycle of Flowering Plants

What is a seed and how does it travel?

How does it know when to germinate?

What do all the different parts of a plant do and how are they pollinated?

These and other questions are answered in this great, hands on workshop.

Available all year round

Sowing and Growing

What is a seed?  What makes it so special?

Why do they come in so many different shapes and sizes?

What do plants need to grow?

Learn about seeds and germination.  Pupils will make have the opportunity to look inside a seed and answer these questions. They will make paper  pots and plant seeds to nurture  back in school.

Available all year round

Life in Ponds

How do dragonfly nymphs breathe underwater?

Why do caddis fly larvae make homes from old sticks and mud?

Who is the top of the food chain in a freshwater pond?

Come pond dipping with us and we’ll help you explore the amazing world that exists under the water’s surface.

Available April – October

Field Safari

Why do carnivores have eyes at the front of their heads?

How does temperature and day/night length affect flowering?

What role do mushrooms play in the ecosystem?

Who did that poo?

Based in one of our classrooms and on our Waun Las National Nature Reserve, an organic working farm, pupils will be introduced to key ecological words, shown how to sample and measure plants in the wild, and how to find and identify animal signs. Pupils will also look at how different animals feed and how all living things are interdependent through food chain and food webs.

Available April – September

Rainforests

Why have rainforests become known as the ’lungs of the planet’ and why is their destruction  linked to climate change?

Rainforests are the oldest and most complex ecosystem on Earth. Tropical rainforests are especially important to the Earth because they store over half the world’s rainwater. The immense amount of photosynthesising living plant material present in rainforests takes in vast amounts of carbon dioxide and gives out oxygen. Visit our Tropical House to discover what it might be like in a Tropical Rainforest. Learn how plants are adapted to live there, what products we all use that come from rainforests and about how important these ancient ecosystems are to us all. This programme is an ideal introduction to the topic and brings alive the subject for pupils and discusses how we might protect rainforests for the future.

Available all year round

Bee Aware

Why are bees important?

What can we do to help look after them?

There is no doubt that many of our bee species are under threat.  We have seen a dramatic drop in the bee population in Britain in the last few years. Learn about the honey bee and how a hive thrives. Explore the vital role played by bees in plant lifecycles and food production, what threatens them and what we can do to help these amazing creatures!

Available April – October

Rocks and Soils

Is soil more valuable than gold?

Come to the Garden to find out. Discover why and how we need to look after our soil and why soils from different places are different colours. What’s the secret recipe for soil, collect ingredients on a garden trail and use them to make your own soil. Group soils using the dirty hands test!

Available all year round

Plants in Medicine

Do plants hold the secret to treat cancer?

What’s the link between daffodils and Alzheimer’s disease?

Explore the history of the use of plants in medicine from the Physicians of Myddfai to the modern day. Discover key points in time for the development of medicines and the links between myths and modern science.

Available all year round

The Allotment – Growing for Success

What makes good compost? Why should I plant my row of carrots in a north – south direction? How can I safely deal with those slugs?

This new ‘hands on’ full day programme ensures that pupils plan for success in their school allotment year after year. They will learn how to plan their plot and tie activities into the school year, how to make successful compost and use it to its best advantage and what the different groups of vegetables are and how to use them in a basic crop rotation system as well as how to deal with pests.

They will also have the opportunity to learn good horticultural techniques such as successful seed sowing and seedling transplanting.

If you are setting up an allotment in school or want to know how to have greater success in your existing space then this will be for you.

Available all year round

What On Earth is Sustainability?

What makes an active citizen?

This challenging workshop explores the different aspects of sustainability, the issues we need to engage with and how we can all make a difference to our sustainable future. It emphasises with pupils that their decisions count.

Available all year round

Green Technology Trail

How do we use plants to heat our Great Glass House and to clean our water?

Our trail explores how the Garden has made choices to ensure we minimise our environmental impact on planet Earth, and describes our role in the Global Plant Conservation Programme.  We challenge pupils to consider what everyday choices they can make in school and at home to join us in trying to live more sustainably.

Available all year round

Fair Trade

What is it and why should we engage with it?

Using the plant collections of the Garden, this challenging workshop links the producer with the consumer and deals with  issues such as inequality, global markets and consumer power. This actively explores the concept of ‘Think Global, Act Local’.

Available all year round

Waste and Recycling

Why do we recycle our waste?

What happens in a landfill?

Come and learn why we are being asked to recycle our waste and how it happens. Make a musical instrument out of junk to take back to school.

Available all year round

The World in a Welsh Cake

What is the origin of Welsh Cakes?

Take a look at traditional foods of Wales such as  Welsh Cakes and Bara Brith, look at recipes and the ingredients in a shopping basket.  Make and cook Welsh Cakes and find out where the ingredients come from and how far they have travelled.

Available all year round

Castaways

What would it be like to be stranded on an island awaiting rescue?

How would you find food and water?

Could you make yourself a shelter?

This new programme uses role play and areas of the Botanic Garden to create an island in which pupils will be challenged to find water, make a shelter and a fire in order to survive whilst waiting to be rescued.

It discusses how ‘salvaged’ items may be useful and what food sources are around to increase their chances of survival.

Available March – October

Earth Walks

Why are leaves different shapes and bark so rough?

How do animals find food?

Through challenging games and activities children  use  their senses to explore the natural environment. This is ideal to build literacy skills and self esteem.

Earth walks have been used throughout the UK, Europe and the US to help children understand the wonders of nature.

Available all year round

Grape Escape

Can you design and build a raft using only natural materials found at the Garden that will carry a grape down the 200 metre Rill and save it from being juiced?

This practical and fun workshop will enable pupils to test their designs.

Available all year round

Seasonal Programmes

Christmas Cake Food Miles

How far has your Christmas cake travelled?

Take a look at a Christmas shopping basket and find out how far your Christmas food ingredients have travelled. Discover their origins and connections with plants from all over the world. Think about the environmental impact of food miles, the options for fair trading by taking part in activities and games.

Available November – December

End of year Summer Trip

Celebrate summer with your year group or whole school. We can help you plan a fun day at the Garden including a trip on our famous recycled chip fat powered land train.

Customised Programmes

We are able to provide programmes to meet your needs. For more information or to speak to a teacher ring the Education Office on 01558 667154 or e-mail jane.richmond@gardenofwales.org.uk