NFU Live Lessons reach record-breaking 275,000 students for British Science Week

11 March 2024

More than 275,000 schoolchildren across the country are celebrating British Science Week and National Careers Week with NFU Education, with three new live lessons bringing farming directly into their classrooms.

Hosted by farmer Fiona Wilshaw and farm vet Dr Claire Whittle, the children will delve into British food and farming to explore key science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects through a real-life farming context. The sessions for Key Stage 1 and 2 include:

  • KS1: Students will see first-hand how farmer Fiona looks after her animals, help feed them and learn how she grows their food from scratch to learn about mammals and seasonal changes. They will also learn about the machinery she uses on her farm and help an agricultural engineer fix her broken tractor.
  • KS2: Guided by Dr Whittle, students will help inspect a cow’s teeth, compare a cow’s digestive system to their own and then go on a ‘poo walk’ to hunt for invertebrates in the fields to learn about the digestive system, nutrition, food chains and habitats.
  • KS2: Students learn how farmers can help take care of cows’ hooves and how Dr Whittle responds to the different emergencies she’s called out to. They will also help scan cows to see if they are pregnant to learn about animal lifecycles, reproduction and inheritance.

NFU Vice President Rachel Hallos said: “Science is engrained in almost every aspect of agriculture, from soil health to crop protection to animal health. By bringing farming into classrooms across the country these lessons help bring often challenging subjects to life, allowing children to explore key STEM topics in a real-life context and gain first-hand experience of the world of work.

“I am incredibly proud of our education work in schools across the country. As well as offering this virtual way of finding out more about farming, the NFU’s initiative is a vitally important means of linking food production with the next generation. The Science Farm Live programme has seen 230,000 students able to step into the boots of a farmer and farm vet to learn about day-to-day life in the agricultural sector.

“I hope this week will inspire students and ignite an interest in a future in science, especially in our fantastic British food and farming sector.”

More information

  1. British Science Week takes place between 8-17 March 2024. The NFU’s Science Farm Live programme will start on 13 March. Find out more about the programme here.
  2. The Science Farm Live programme joins other projects from the NFU Education team including the popular Farmvention challenge, Farmers for Schools and STEMterprise.
  3. Follow NFU Education on X (formerly Twitter), Instagram or Facebook.