The Institute of Education at UCL was recently commissioned by The Wildlife Trusts to research the effect on children of engaging with the natural world outdoors. The report found that the experience boosted children’s confidence and overall had a very positive impact.
One of the projects which Areti helped to fund this year was “Close to the Wind” – a piece of work made by year 3 children from four local schools working with the Arnside & Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Cumbria-based sound artist, Dan Fox.
Children from Archbishop Hutton’s School, Arnside National School, Morecambe Bay Primary School and Ryelands School climbed Warton Crag in September to listen to the sounds of nature and to learn more about the natural world.
The children’s words and experiences were stitched together to produce this work for Light Up Lancaster; the screen is made from hundreds of strips of elastic, and as the wind blows across them it creates acoustic sounds and visual patterns, while the children’s recorded voices complete the work.
The Areti Trust is funding more class visits to Leighton Moss for Willow Lane Primary School and Mossgate Primary School.
Pupils and teachers noticed improvements in pupils’ engagement with learning, concentration and behaviour, as well as positive impacts on health and wellbeing and teachers’ job satisfaction.
but also acknowledges the barriers to its wider implementation.
One of the grants made earlier this year was to Morecambe Bay Partnership for a project teaching local primary school children about the fishing history and ecology of the bay. Visits to Sunderland Point have already taken place, with further visits planned in September. Schools involved are West End Primary Morecambe, Ridge Primary Lancaster, Ryelands Lancaster and St Mary’s Catholic Primary Morecambe.
After the visit to Sunderland Bay, the pupils work with About Time Dance Company to create a dance based on what they have learned about fish and the sea.
The trustees met recently to consider the latest applications, and they agreed on the following grants:
- £400 to the 1st Morecambe & Heysham Boys’ Brigade towards the cost of coach hire for their week-long summer camp in South Wales.
- £1,175 to Skerton Community Centre for their youth group to go to Brockhole, Lake District for the day.
- £2,000 to the Lancashire Association of Boys & Girls Clubs towards Bushcraft sessions and an outdoor adventure weekend for young people.
- £5,000 to Arnside & Silverdale AONB towards work with local schools to create artwork for Light Up Lancaster in November.
A group of 8-10-year-olds from Lancaster Boys & Girls Club visited Beacon Fell over the half-term and, despite the rain, managed to have a good time.
The Areti Trust has made last-minute grants to help pupils from St Patrick’s Primary in Heysham and St Joseph’s Primary in Lancaster visit Leighton Moss nature reserve for the day.
The Areti Trust made a grant last week to enable children from Skerton St Luke’s CE Primary School to visit Leighton Moss nature reserve in May.