Fancy a dip? Jubilee Primary kids get stuck in at the Woodberry Wetlands

Pupils from Jubilee Primary school on a visit to the Woodberry Wetlands and being shown around by Ha

Pupils from Jubilee Primary school on a visit to the Woodberry Wetlands and being shown around by Hamish Burnett from the London Wildlife Trust - Credit: Archant

Youngsters overcame their “suspicion” of mini-beasts and discovered a menagerie of wildlife lurking under the water in ponds, on a day to get them back in touch with nature.

The six- and seven-year-olds from Jubilee Primary School were taking part in an outdoor education programme, Wild About Learning, set up for local schools at the Woodberry Wetlands nature reserve – which was opened by David Attenborough last month. The children went on a hunt for insects and invertebrates and their habitats on the woodland trail, then tried their hands at “pond-dipping”.

Edwin Malins, community engagement officer for the London Wildlife Trust at Woodberry Wetlands, said: “It’s about establishing more contact with nature that’s on their doorstep, essentially. As generations go by children have less and less freedom to roam and explore outdoor spaces like they did in the past.

“The ‘mini-beast’ hunt is about discovering where they live, and overcoming their suspicion of these creatures. They start the session dubious whether they want to look for things like slugs and snails – and they end up getting really into it.”

He continued: “The pond-dipping is also really good because children often look at a pond and assume there’s nothing in it. There’s just a few plants sticking up, but they are surprised what they get out.”

The sessions are funded by the People’s Postcode Lottery, which has contributed £500,000 to help Wildlife Trusts connect inner-city children with nature this year.

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