Working with local schools

Part of our vision statement is to see Sinfin Moor Park Local Nature Reserve used as an educational resource and with several schools within walking distance, the site is well-placed to provide outdoor learning to fulfil many areas of the National Curriculum. Even when schools come from slightly further away and need transport, there is a recognition that Sinfin is relatively convenient compared to usual school trip destinations and can offer a wide experience, as well as an awareness for children that wildlife and natural spaces can be part of urban life.

We have had the pleasure of seeing many children absorbed in discovering wildlife and making careful observations. 

The Friends group first hosted school visits during Wild Week in May 2008, when several classes from local schools came to the Nature Reserve to take part in minibeast hunting in the main pond, woodland and meadow.  Subsequently, project funding allowed us to continue to provide a number of school visits.  In 2011 and 2012 we took part in the city-wide Schools Bioblitz, following the successful event at Markeaton Park in 2010.  The Bioblitz took place at various parks in Derby with the purpose of discovering the diversity of wildlife around the city.  Classes from local schools spent the day at Sinfin Local Nature Reserve investigating wildlife in various habitats. 

  Building a shelter

Children from City of Derby Academy have taken part in a day of learning survival skills with Dave Watson, Woodland Survival Crafts, at Wayne's Wood, Sinfin, arranged by the Friends group.

Much of our work with schools has been undertaken with the support and guidance of Rosalind Allen (formerly with Groundwork Derby and Derbyshire), who planned and led several sessions for school groups, tailor-made to suit their requirements.  Activities to explore the outdoor environment have included using the senses, such as making a ‘smelly cocktail’ of leaves and natural materials, working out positions on a map and going on a scavenger hunt. Pond dipping and meadow sweeping always prove firm favourites.

Rosalind worked with us and local schools to produce an Environmental Activity Pack, with activities and resources to support educational visits to the Nature Reserve.  A hard copy of this Pack has been donated to each primary school in Sinfin and Stenson Fields and it can be viewed electronically on this website - click on the Education Pack section.

For further information about using Sinfin Local Nature Reserve as an educational resource, please contact:

Jean Lung,    07866940198.