Without doubt the highlight of the week for Year 2 was our trip to Mop End. Having visited in the Autumn it was lovely to go back and see how the environment was different in Spring. Linking with our Science work on habitats we began our day by thinking about the challenges and adaptations needed for a life lived in the pond. The children were able to identify vertebrate and invertebrate they expected to find in the pond. Toby suggested ‘Pond skater’ and Dillon ‘Boatman’ and Alex knew when talking about vertebrate that the back bone is called a spine. Nobody suggested Newts although they were to become the star attraction when the pond dipping began.
Linking back to our previous work on food chains the children correctly identified which creatures were predators and which were prey and then we set off with our nets and our ‘creature catchers’ to see what we might found. The air was soon filled with the sound of children excitedly shouting ‘We’ve got a newt’ and one group witnessed the predator/prey relationship first hand when to their great surprise a beetle larvae polished off an unsuspecting tadpole!
Luckily we are not a squeamish bunch as we proved in the afternoon when we went for our minibeast hunt in the woods. All the children had a great time poking through the leaf litter and moving logs to see what was hiding beneath. We sorted them in collection pots one for ‘sticky’ and one for ‘leggy’ creatures.
We finished our day by working in groups to construct a sculpture of our favourite minibeast.