How we're educating young people 21 Aug
The Lincolnshire Showground is owned by the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society, a charitable organisation whose objectives are to educate the county about food, farming and a sustainable environment. Our Education and Development Officer, Rosie, plans an exciting and interactive year-round programme of curriculum-based events to engage and inspire children and young people around Lincolnshire and beyond.
One of Rosie's main focuses is to invite schools to take their learning out of the classroom by visiting the Lincolnshire Showground to develop their knowledge and understanding about where their food comes from and how it's produced.
Farmhouse Breakfast Week
In January, we offer breakfast workshops to coincide with the ADHB 'Shake Up Your Wake Up' Breakfast Week. For a whole week, school schildren from across the county are given the opportunity to get really hands-on with lots of fun farm-to-fork interactive activities focused on the most important meal of the day - breakfast!
Tractors into Schools
Brand new in 2016, we worked with the NFU again in 2017 to host this exciting initiative - to put a tractor into every Lincolnshire primary school playground. We want to continue to link local farmers up with primary schools to build lasting relationships and educate children on the importance of farming and understanding of where their food comes from.
For one Sunday a year, the Lincolnshire Showground is transformed into an educational hub for children and families to learn to make, bake, explore and experience all things connected to food, farming and the countryside. This year, more than 4,000 people attended the family-friendly day out to interact with farmyard animals, experience craft making activities and also meet with local Lincolnshire producers, farmers and chefs to bake tasty foods while learning about Lincolnshire's rural heritage.
The Lincolnshire Show
The annual Lincolnshire Show is a huge outdoor classroom for children packed full of educational opportunities. This year we welcomed 6,000 children, who were all enthused and inspired by food, farming and the countryside during their visit.
The theme in the Education Marquee at the 2017 Lincolnshire Show was 'The Grain Journey', with interactive activities and displays all related to the journey from seed to bread. We encouraged children to get involved with bread making, storytelling and related crafts, scarecrow making and grain collage pictures and a display about the milling process.
But the fun doesn't stop there! We also offer livestock tours around the cattle, sheep and pigs that are on show and, in the Meet-a-Moo Marquee, the opportunity to meet some different breeds of cattle - including our very own Lincoln Red! - and have a go at milking Poppy the wooden dairy cow.
The Lincolnshire Show also sees hundreds of schoolchildren take part in the Schools' Challenge, an initiative run by the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society and The EBP. This year, 1,940 students from 36 schools across the county entered the prestigious competition, taking part in different challenges all related to food, farming, the countryside and sustainability and linked to the national curriculum.
With support and advice from a farm mentor, schools work on their chosen project throughout the year before displaying it in the Schools' Challenge area on Show days.
Would you like to be a farming mentor? The Schools' Challenge continues to grow in strength through the support of farm mentors from across the county. Farm mentors support schools with their chosen challenge, share their expertise and knowledge and link the school with appropriate contacts.
Here's what one of our farm mentors has to say about her experience: "I have supported the Schools' Challenge as a farm mentor for a few years. It is a really interesting and satisfying project to be involved with and I was really surprised at how much the children and the teachers get out of the challenges.
"Helping and guiding the teachers as to what is available in Lincolnshire for them to experience to support their challenge is one aspect of mentoring. I also feel that one of the key aspects of being a mentor is sharing your own knowledge - you don't know how much you have to pass on until you find a school that is really keen to hear what you have to say. I have found mentoring to be a very satisfying, rewarding and enjoyable part of my life."
If you're interested in supporting schools as a farm mentor, email Rosie or call 01522 585521.
Rosie is already busy planning next year's programme of educational events here at the Showground, but you can see what's still to come in 2017 by taking a look at our educational events.