Teachers now able to ‘Take the Lead’ in countryside education
7th July 2017
Teachers can now access an excellent range of resources to help deliver lessons on UK sheep farming and the issue of sheep worrying, thanks to a joint initiative between the National Sheep Association (NSA), Farmers Guardian and Farming and Countryside Education (FACE).
The initiative, specifically aimed at primary school children, was launched in April this year as part of the ‘Take the Lead’ campaign to promote responsible dog ownership and cut the number of attacks on sheep.
Using the Countryside Classroom platform, pupils from more than 750 primary schools will now have opportunity to be taught about the impact of dog attacks on livestock and the importance of keeping the family pet under control around sheep. The resource can also be used to teach about the wider benefits sheep bring to the countryside and how they fit into the supply chain.
Sheep farmers are also being encouraged to get involved in spreading these important messages by speaking to school groups on what their job involves where ever possible. Hopefully by sharing their first-hand experiences, children will take on-board the seriousness of this issue.
NSA Chief Executive Phil Stocker says: “I’m thrilled to be involved in this fantastic initiative to educate children about our countryside and associated issues. This presents a valuable opportunity for sheep farmers to get out and speak to children who will hopefully go home and relay the important messages around keeping a dog on a lead around sheep to their parents. I’d encourage those in a position to visit their local primary school to make the most of these resources wherever possible.
The tool kit includes PowerPoint presentations, interactive video clips and quizzes and children will also be given ‘I always take the lead’ stickers, intended to help strike up conversations with their families when they return home.
Dan Corlett, FACE Chief Executive, says: "We are very pleased to be part of the Take the Lead campaign. Sheep worrying by dogs is a really important issue for farmers and we hope the campaign will lead to a reduction in avoidable harm to sheep. For us it also presents a great opportunity to engage more school children in learning about and protecting the countryside.
Teachers, farmers and other interested parties wanting to access the resources can find them at www.countrysideclassroom.org.uk/resources/1206.