Discovering Wildlife in South West England and Wales

Written by: Elmtree Press

Slimbridge and Llanelli Wetlands

Whether you are looking for a hands-on exploratory investigation into wetland life and habitats, or wanting to understand the survival and conservation of wetland species, Slimbridge offers a unique combination of guided and self-guided learning sessions suited to a wide range of ages and abilities. Both Slimbridge and Llanelli Wetland centres offer close-up encounters with birds from around the world. There are also spectacular wetland habitats and species to discover.
Study projects to investigate include:-
Dip with nets in the wildlife ponds to find freshwater invertebrates. Explore and identify the animals you catch using magnifying glasses and ID keys. How will you describe your animals and how do they compare?
Catch freshwater animals and explore their adaptations, body parts and behaviour. Use your observations to group animals and make predictions. What do you think your animals do in the pond and what do they need to survive?
Launch a sound enquiry outdoors using your ears and our equipment to discover and identify wetland sounds. Describe what you can hear, make comparisons and find patterns. What will you hear, what's making that sound and why?
Find out about WWT's work to protect wetland habitats and wildlife and experience the techniques they use to bring people and wildlife closer together.
Find out how the resident otters and beavers are perfectly adapted to their environment.
It will “wet” your student’s appetites for learning more about the valuable work of the WWT!

Whatever the age, Longleat has so many educational opportunities. Primary and secondary schools can enjoy bringing the curriculum alive visiting Longleat House or through close encounters with animals. Lasting memories are made that enhance and reinforce classroom learning. Children of all ages love animals and for those at the beginning of their learning journey they can help introduce the concept of the wider world. Your students are able to get close the animals and can observe ones that have become popular through books and television.
Teachers are encouraged to visit in advance of their school visit. The site has many attractions and facilities which are best experienced for effective planning. You may also be able to discuss your visit with Education staff, subject to availability.

Longleat House itself, is also a great starting point for other curriculum areas; inspiration for creative writing, drama performance, song writing or art work; developing speaking and listening skills; carrying out maths investigations. The house was built during the reign of Elizabeth I with many alterations taking place during the reign of Queen Victoria.  There is a wealth of art work and artefacts that come from different time periods that are on display.  The range of rooms and objects work well for topics such as how we lived, people through time and local history.It is an amazing opportunity for supplying a fascinating cross curricular day out for your students.