5 ways for farmers to get involved in education

Tuesday, 8 September 2020

If you’re a farmer looking to engage with your local school, AHDB is here to help. We provide tools and resources that help you educate schoolchildren about farming and where food comes from.

There are five different ways farmers can help children learn more about farming:

Help your local school or community find the right resources by pointing them towards Food – a fact of life and Countryside Classroom.

Food – a fact of life promotes knowledge and skills on where food comes from and encourages young people to adopt cooking and healthy eating habits. The resources are designed for the whole curriculum – from three to 16 years. The education programme by a partnership of AHDB and the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF).

Countryside Classroom helps teachers find resources and places to visit as well as providing schools with support on food, farming and the natural environment. The website covers early years, through to 16-18 year olds, and has resources for every subject from art through to languages and science. It is free to use and managed by a partnership of organisations, including AHDB.

Sharing the resources in your community or on social media can help.

Encourage schools to get their hands dirty with Grow Your Own Potatoes!

AHDB launched Grow Your Own Potatoes in 2005. It was one of the first primary school-based growing projects. Since then it has become the largest of its kind, with over 5 million children taking part.

Schools register to take part and receive a growing kit in February. Using the free kit, children learn all about growing potatoes, from chitting, planting and growing, through to harvesting. The website also provides great recipes to try and resources to support teachers. At the end of the project, schools can enter their weights into a competition to win prizes for their school, including for the largest potato and greatest number of potatoes harvested.

Contact our education team if you’d like some flyers to send to your local schools.

Use our online ordering form to download digital resources

To help engage the next generation, download or order our latest set of posters ‘farming food for you’ to share with your local school. The posters feature information from Food – a fact of life, stats on UK farming and other promotional posters.

Speak to schools directly with Farmer Time

Run by Linking Environment and Farming (LEAF), Farmer Time helps you to connect to classrooms directly by holding a live chat with them. It provides a great opportunity to talk to the next generation of consumers about where their food comes from.

Children chat to their matched farmer through FaceTime or Skype discuss ideas, ask questions, share knowledge and gain a ‘real-time’ understanding of the issues farmers face every day.

Host education visits to your farm by becoming CEVAS accredited.

Although CEVAS distance learning courses are currently suspended until 2021, dates for new courses will launch this autumn.

CEVAS is an accredited learning programme for farmers interested in providing education or therapeutic (care farming) experiences at their farm. CEVAS-trained farmers welcome 500,000 schoolchildren every year.

There are two routes available – either education or therapeutic. While the former is aimed mainly at schools, the latter covers a wide range of visits. On top of this, becoming CEVAS accredited counts towards BASIS and Dairy Pro.

For more information about the AHDB’s education please contact Elsa Healey, Senior Education Manager at AHDB on 024 7647 8972 or email education@ahdb.org.uk