What a couple of jam packed days! Having enjoyed the many Geography based activities yesterday in Morpeth town centre, the year 7 pupils who opted to extend the trip by a couple of days by jumping into a coach bound for Wooler youth hostel were whisked up to North Northumberland in good spirits to be welcomed by equally good weather. Pupils were introduced to the hostel and spent some time acclimatising to their new home. To take advantage of the sunny conditions and to give pupils a good view of the surrounding area, we went for a walk onto Wooler common – encountering some of the local wildlife on the way (including a hedgehog that forgotten that it is supposed to nocturnal!). Once back, it was good old sausage and mash on the menu followed by a choice of rice pudding or fruit and ice cream. Pupils then had their brains stretched by a ‘Mr Pusey Easter quiz’!
Tuesday morning started with breakfast consisting of cereal, toast and a fantastic bacon bap – fuel for the very active day ahead. It was then time to go out into the first habitat we were going to study – a freshwater stream. Although the freshwater was being added to by a decent dose of rain, it didn’t dampen pupils’ spirits when it came to studying all the fabulous organisms swimming around in the shallow fast flowing stream. Pupils competed to find the most stunning aquatic specimen (with a chunky crane fly larvae being the outright winner!) whilst sampling the stream with a sweep net. We then went back to the hostel to dry off and eat our tasty packed lunches.
The afternoon was all about the rocky shore. Despite being rained upon again, pupils were undeterred and went about sampling the rock pools and looking for any changes in the types of seaweeds present to see if there were any patterns. Another energy fuelled meal, once we got back to the hostel, was followed by a ‘classroom’ session bringing together all that the children had learnt and experienced during the day.
We are eagerly looking forward to a morning at Ford Moss tomorrow, where we will be looking at bogland, woodland and fenland habitats, then back home to catch buses and start Easter holidays with (hopefully!) lots of good memories of the childrens’ first experience of the fascinating area of science that is ecology!