Our Activities

If you wish to discuss the content of any of these further, please give us a call.
We can tailor the topic to a specific project, or needs of the group.

Select your activities - click on a button to view relevant workshops

Animal House

An opportunity for your class to get up close to, handle and learn about Austerfield’s amazing animals. We have a variety of mini beasts, amphibians, birds & reptiles from around the world. Our sessions are tailored for each Key Stage to cover the relevant elements of the Science National Curriculum.

Brilliant Birds

A fabulous session which will enable your class to learn more about our brilliant British birds, including information about their special features, what they need to survive, habitats and diet. There will be time for some bird spotting with binoculars around the reserve, followed by bird themed activities in our evergreen forest.

Enchanted Woodland

A wonderful magical session involving a walk through the mosaic reserve looking for tree fairies and learning about the different types of trees (including seasonal changes). Activities include making peg fairies, decorating your own fairy door, making fairy houses in our pine forest then finishing off with a fairy door hunt.

Flow, Aqueducts & Dams

A fun outdoor activity, performing experiments using guttering, water & corks to create an understanding of flow, including creating own aqueducts & a dam using natural materials.

Habitat Hunters

A very interactive session which allows your class to be hunters looking around different habitats within the mosaic reserve (sandy heathland as well as both deciduous and evergreen woodlands). We will look for signs of animals (tracking footprints, droppings…) and then the children will enjoy creating their own woodland animal habitats in our pine forest. KS2 session also includes food chains.

Marvellous Mini Beasts

Enter Austerfield's wonderful woodland and heathland habitats. A perfect backdrop to investigate marvellous Mini beasts. We will be collecting, identifying and grouping the bugs that we find using a variety of scientific equipment. Our sessions are tailored for each Key Stage to cover the relevant elements of the Science National Curriculum.

Mayflower Migration

Commemorate Austerfield's connections to the Mayflower Pilgrims. Your class will be transported back to the 1600's and experience pilgrim life first hand. Following in the steps of William Bradford, walk the village trail, ending with a visit to the historical Church of St Helena.

Nature Connection

This session involves a seasonal nature walk around the reserve to fully engage the senses (sound mapping, meet a tree, scavenger hunt, wild art, smelly potions…) These activities will vary depending upon the season and age range of the children.

Nature Explorers

The children will learn about some famous explorers, and think about what skills and equipment an explorer might need. For an expedition around the Mosaic Reserve they will be equipped with a bag of specialist explorer equipment. They will have the opportunity to create their own journey maps (using map symbols) and decorate a journey stick to show where they’ve been. We will stop in different places along the way to explore the area and add detail to maps and journey sticks.

Orienteering

Children will be taught how to use a map & compass to enable them to complete an orienteering course out on the mosaic reserve. A great activity for building confidence and team work. Lower KS2 do find this activity challenging so some additional adult support would be beneficial. KS1 Orienteering course now available.

Plant Power

KS1: The session will include an interactive game about what plants need to grow, a walk around the reserve to identify & learn about a range of plants, an activity to learn about plant structure as well as other activities related to the current season. Lower KS2 (Yr 3/4): The session will include a walk around the reserve to identify & learn about a range of plants (flowering plants, both deciduous & evergreen trees, ferns & mosses) as well as information about pollination, seed formation and seed dispersal. There will also be an activity to learn about plant structure as well as other activities related to the current season. Upper KS2 (Yr 5/6): As for lower KS2, but with more emphasis on how plants reproduce (sexual & asexual reproduction), adaptation & classification.

Pond Life

Enter Austerfield's picturesque pond habitat. A perfect backdrop to investigate our pond life. We will be collecting, identifying and grouping the bugs that we find using a variety of scientific equipment. Our sessions are tailored for each Key Stage in order to cover the Science National Curriculum. ** Please note this activity can only be offered between the months of April and September due to seasonal conditions. **

Quarry & Soils

This is a hands-on session that allows children to investigate soils. We will focus on what soil is made of, take soil samples from different locations, and compare them, sieve soil to analyse particle size as well as get our hands dirty classifying soils by type. This session includes a visit to the nearby sand quarry where the children will be able to see the machinery used and find out more about sandstone and clay. There may also be opportunity to talk to a member of staff from the quarry and ask them questions.

Rivers and Water Cycle

Identify, order and learn about the key features of a river from its source to the sea. Your class will then have the opportunity to venture out onto the mosaic reserve and make their own river and use signposts to label its key features. Then become part of the water cycle in our fun and interactive game!

Rocks

This interactive session enables your class to learn about the three different varieties of rocks (igneous, sedimentary & metamorphic). Your class will also have the opportunity to handle the rocks and perform a variety of different experiments to enable them to learn more about the properties of different rocks. You could even make this session into a full day by including a visit to the nearby working sand quarry and learning about soils. (See Quarry & soils description)

Shelter Building

An opportunity for your class to work in teams to learn about & make their very own natural shelter out on the mosaic reserve. Once they have created their shelter they will have time to use their imaginations to add some extra features and have fun in the natural environment.

Stone Age Day

A full day of hands-on learning about the Stone Age. Children will have a go at making their own natural woodland shelter, learn about prehistoric & modern fire lighting techniques & have a go at using a fire steel, forage (depending on season) and cook some food on the fire. There will also be time for some crafting (cave art using natural paints or clay modelling).

Story Book Session

Based on popular nature-themed picture story books. Ignite the children's imagination and bring literacy to life with our fun-filled activity sessions. Each session includes both craft and outdoor activities. Please speak to us to discuss the theme you would like to choose. You can also select a second activity to complete your day.

Survival Skills (half day)

A fun, hands on survival skills session which will give the children an opportunity to learn the practical skills and knowledge required to safely light, manage and cook on an open fire. They will learn about different methods of fire lighting, go foraging for firewood and learn how to use a fire steel to have a go at lighting different natural tinders. The fire pit will be then lit to enable the children to cook some food over the fire. (Muffins & crumpets with various toppings, apples, marshmallows and also nettles when in season).

Team Games

Using negotiation and problem solving skills your class will collaborate in a range of exciting outdoor team activities. There will be opportunities for the children to work in different sized teams to achieve a goal.

Tremendous Trees

During this session, the children will learn about the importance of trees, take part in interactive games to find out more about what trees need to grow, as well as learning about seasonal changes and tree structure. They will also enjoy a walk around the reserve to identify a range of different trees (deciduous & evergreen). This session would go well with wild art (using different parts of trees and other plants to create pieces of art).

Wild Art

We will provide a range of seasonal activities for the children to choose from include creating 2D & 3D wild art in the woods, botanical printing, painting with natural brushes & paints, jewellery. Depending on the age and size of group there may also be an opportunity to use some basic tools to whittle wood. Old clothes would be more appropriate for this session as it could get messy!