Visit a Farm
Have you ever asked a child where their food comes from? Their response is often "The supermarket!"
Getting children outdoors and letting them experience a real working farm will reconnect them with where food comes from, and will provide them with an enjoyable experience and lasting memories. Our aim is for all pupils to visit a farm during their time at school.
We’ve worked with many farms to help them prepare for educational school visits, so pupils can get the most out of their trip. Farmers are more than happy to talk about how a working farm functions and the different aspects of food production.
By building good links with your local farm, you may want to set up a regular programme of visits throughout the year and learn about the natural cycles from planting right through to harvesting.
Some of our schools have actually set up their own farmers markets in their school grounds, inviting in local farmers and other suppliers to sell their produce. Again this is a great way to make those connections between local businesses and the community.
We’ve created a great farm finder which you can use to search for your nearest farm. We’ve also put together a useful list of other organisations which can support schools in all aspects of building links with farms.
Organise a farm visit
We have collated and produced a set of resources that will guide you through the process of organising your farm visit. The documents cover everything from guidance on carrying out a pre-visit, important health and safety information; to interesting activities and ideas for questions to ask the farmer!
Advice from the Health and Safety Executive on visits to farms is contained within the Industry Code of Practice. It is essential that you read and take note of the information in these documents if you are involved in organising visits. The Code of Practice Summary provides a useful overview of some of the health and safety issues to consider, whilst the Code of Practice Document provide the complete text. Whilst the summary and full document are aimed at farms/visitor attractions to advise on how to manage the risks on their site, it is important to read it to understand the potential risks, as well as reading the teachers’ supplement.
In addition, the Food for Life ‘Farm pre-visit proforma’ provides a template for schools to use, ensuring that all of the essential questions are asked when organising the visit and meeting with the farm.