Photo Gallery: Toft Monks schoolchildren plant trees

The group of 10 and 11-year-olds from Glebeland Primary School, in Toft Monks, crossed the road to Clinks Care Farm to help plant 125 trees.

It was the third of four weeks of planting that the children are doing at the farm as they help to create a woodland of 880 trees.

Alan Williams, headteacher, said: 'Clinks Farm wanted to establish a woodland and thought it would be good if the school planted it and over the next few years we can look at the wildlife develop.'

The farm has a 10 Higher Level Stewardship agreement with Natural England to plant five acres of woodland, one acre of orchard and hedging on the farm, and they approached the school to see if they wanted to be involved.

On Wednesday, 24 children, from Year 5 and 6, were split into groups as they helped to measure out, dig, and plant and cover some of the trees.


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Leon Edwards, 11, was among the children putting covers around the freshly planted trees.

He said: 'It has been very fun. It has been a good experience and not many schools get to do this. It is so close we can walk down and don't need a coach.'

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Teacher Clare Williams said: 'They have been so enthusiastic about it, have seen how it links with the curriculum and taken that enthusiasm back into the classroom. A couple of children who are quite quiet in class have really come out of themselves.'

Doeke Dobma, who runs the farm which helps vulnerable people from across Norfolk, said the activity was helping the children to learn a lot about their local environment.

He said: 'I've been impressed with how they are picking it up really quickly. Most of the children had not seen an ash or oak and now they can tell you correctly what it is.'

He added that they had also been able to experience a range of conditions to work in with this week's hard ground a vast contrast to the previous muddy conditions.

The 143-acre farm regularly welcomes groups of vulnerable people from across the community, and Mr Dobma said it had been good for the children to be working with those who were benefiting from spending time on the care farm. Children at Glebeland Primary School have previously visited the farm to learn about its wind turbine and hope to learn more from the ponds which are being dredged.

The children will be planting a further 60 trees to create their own Jubilee woodland at the farm after being given the trees by the Woodland Trust. They will also plant a Jubilee Oak on their school grounds. A competition is under way to name the woodland and their own Jubilee woodland.

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