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Bute Park becomes a 'Living Classroom'

Last modified: 17 July 2013

Boy peering into jar of water collected from a pond dipping exercise

Image: Wales News Service

Children from Stacey Primary School in Cardiff were among the first to benefit from a new initiative to use the Bute Park Education Centre as a RSPB Living Classroom.

The joint RSPB Cymru and Cardiff Council initiative started in May this year with the aim of connecting more city children to the wildlife on their doorstep.

Cabinet Member for Sport, Leisure and Culture, Cllr Huw Thomas said: “Travel times and expense can be a barrier to city-based children getting out and experiencing the natural world but the partnership between Cardiff Council and the RSPB will provide the opportunity for school children and community groups across Cardiff to utilise our impressive Education Centre and learn and experience the surprising diversity of nature within Bute Park.

”Bute Park is home to an impressive number of species including bats, birds and other animals and we are extremely fortunate that this hub of wildlife exists right in the centre of our city.

Michelle Marshall is a teacher at Stacey Primary Schools, she says: “The children were asked to use all their senses to learn about the natural world. From hunting for mini-beasts, dipping for pond life and tracking signs of wildlife and environmental change – they had such an amazing time and learnt so much. I was surprised at how many different habitats they could explore within the park.

The fact the Bute Park Education Centre is so accessible in the city centre makes it really convenient and the RSPB staff were very knowledgeable and professional ”

Katie-Jo Luxton RSPB Cymru Director says: “We are increasingly concerned about children’s disconnection with nature, this new partnership right in the city centre will enable us to give a whole new group of children the experiences in nature they are missing out on.” 

At RSPB Living Classrooms, high-skilled field teachers work with schools and informal youth groups, and use a range of fun and educational techniques to engage and connect young people with nature.

If you are a teacher or a group leader in the Cardiff area and want to participate in a Living Classroom session at the Bute Park Education Centre, please call Tara Okon on 01633 636354 or e-mail tara.okon@rspb.org.uk 

How you can help

Nature in the UK is in trouble and some of our more familiar garden species are amongst those suffering serious declines. We can all help by give nature a home where we live.

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