200 children at Folksworth C of E Primary School learn about where their breakfast comes from with Kids Country
The sun came out as Kids Country, the education initiative managed by the East of England Agricultural Society, returned to school this week at Folksworth C of E Primary School, delivering its fully booked Breakfast Week event to over 200 Key Stage 1 and 2 children.
The event was supported by Marriage’s Flour, Ladies in Pigs, Vine House Farm, Co-op Central England, Thomas Beazley, Park Farm Thorney, and Schöffel Country – who came along as part of their new partnership with Kids Country, to be launched on ‘Black Friday’.
Folksworth C of E Primary school headteacher, Michelle Norbury, said: “We’ve worked with Kids Country many times over the years and know how exciting it is for the children to have this kind of hands-on learning experience brought to them in school. It is so important to get children excited about locally produced food and how it is grown – we are surrounded by farmland at our village school so for children to understand what that land produces, with activities like Farmer Luke’s ‘Metre Square’ is really engaging for our students.”
Children with Charlie Coups and Paul Tomson from Schöffel Country, and Farmer James
Children rotated around four activities – Pancake Making, Pig Zone (learning all about pig farming and tasting the difference between free range rare breed pork sausages and typical premium supermarket ones), Tractor Zone with Farmer James from Park Farm Thorney, and the Metre Square with Farmer Luke, where children learn exactly what can be grown in a metre square of farmland and the inputs required to do so.
Joining the Kids Country for the first time was award winning food writer, Jenny Jefferies. Jenny, author of the For the Love of the Land and For the Love of the Sea books, said: “It was a real privilege to come along to the Kids Country Breakfast Week today. It’s such a fantastic and inspiring initiative, and to see first-hand how school children are experiencing food provenance in an all-inclusive, enjoyable and informative way is both heartening and wonderful. This is what it’s all about!”
Alongside the usual team of Kids Country educators and volunteers, the event also welcomed Charlie Coups and Paul Tomson from Schöffel Country, who are partnering with Kids Country this year for a range of fundraising events – kicking off with their Black Friday event next week. Charlie said: “We were delighted to join the team at Kids Country for the start of Breakfast Week 2022. It was clear from the offset how passionate Sandra and her team are in helping to educate children about food, farming and the countryside. The children were excited to learn and engaged throughout the morning in a variety of hands-on tasks – it’s not every day you get the chance to see a tractor up close or do a taste test on rare breed vs supermarket sausages! I hope that over the next twelve months, Schöffel Country can help to shine a light on these countryside heroes and the incredible work they do in educating the next generation.”
Paul and Charlie from Schoffel Country in the classroom with Farmer Luke as they help demonstrate how sugar beet is grown
The Kids Country team also took their Breakfast Week event to Fourfields Community Primary School, Yaxley, and Clough and Risegate Community Primary School, Spalding, in the same week, with a second Breakfast Week sold-out in January.
Kids Country education manager, Sandra Lauridsen, said: “Breakfast Week is always such a great event to bring to schools as children all eat breakfast in some form, so it’s really useful to engage them in not only how that breakfast is grown – whether it’s sausages, toast or cereal – but also about making healthy nutritional choices part of their decisions.”
“We are so grateful for all of our volunteers, educators, the companies donating produce and their time, and also to Jenny Jefferies, and Charlie and Paul from Schöffel Country – their engagement helps us to bring more events like Breakfast Week to more schools going forwards.”