Students get farming education tailored to their GCSE subjects at Elveden Estate
PUBLISHED: 16:34 21 June 2019 | UPDATED: 16:34 21 June 2019
Jamie Markham / LEAF
Hundreds of GCSE students from across East Anglia gathered on a commercial farm near Thetford for a day of focused farming education tailored to their subject curriculums.
The #FarmMyFood activity day at the Elveden Estate was organised by LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming) Education was designed specifically for students studying for GCSEs in business and food preparation and nutrition.
The aim was to get 13 to 15-year-olds more interested in food, farming and nutrition, to teach them the importance of good business skills in an agricultural enterprise, and to profile some of the career opportunities available in the sector.
The event included business and food workshops; careers surgeries run by businesses, colleges and universities; and sessions on animal welfare, the environment, health, nutrition and the future of the food industry.
There were also cookery and butchery demonstrations, a tour of Elveden Farms - which is a LEAF Demonstration Farm - and a group challenge for students to design and market their own online food box menu.
The event was a response to findings from a LEAF Education study which showed 35pc of 12 to 18-year-olds felt that young people should be more interested in how food is produced, with a further 32pc saying they would consider a career in farming, but only 22pc said they had received relevant careers information.
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Gaina Dunsire, LEAF Education's regional consultant for the East of England, said: "We have been overwhelmed by the response today from both students and teachers.
"The full spectrum of the agricultural community came together to provide these young people with a stimulating and engaging insight into farming and what it delivers.
"Students have seen, tasted, touched and heard about the exciting work taking place within agriculture and how it relates to their own lives and the issues that matter to them.
"In the long term, we hope the day has also highlighted to teachers the wide range of learning opportunities which exist on farms and the support that LEAF Education can offer. We would love to see more learning take place outside the classroom; to enrich learning, promote well-being and improve knowledge about healthy, nutritious food made from UK produce."