When pupils from St Peter’s C.E. Academy arrived at school on a cold winter’s day, they didn’t expect to see a tractor parked in the middle of their school field. Thanks to a national competition run by the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), children at the Raunds junior school had a day full of farming challenges in store.
‘Farmvention’ (when farming meets invention) is a national science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) competition that aims to inspire primary school children to learn more about the agricultural industry, while developing their problem solving, creativity and innovation skills.
Spending the day with two experienced farmers, Tristan and Tim, pupils at St Peter’s had the chance to find out more about daily life on a farm. Taking on challenges which included designing a tractor of the future, creating a truly British snack and inventing a purpose-built hen house, pupils of all ages were then charged with working together in teams to put forward their own ideas for new inventions.
“Today was amazing! It made me realise how hard farmers have to work and all of the important jobs they have to do.”Alexis, one pupil who took part in the challenge said
“Farmvention was a great way to learn more about farming!”Another pupil, Mayamiko, added:
Miss Meminger, Class Teacher at St Peter’s C.E. Academy, said: “It was fantastic to see the children so engaged in the activities. They were using knowledge from across the curriculum and thought very carefully about the importance of farming for our economy, our environment and our communities.”
She continued: “The farmers seemed to be really impressed with the incredible ideas coming from all of our pupils and we’re looking forward to putting St Peter’s forward for the next stage of the competition.”
Chris Hill, Chief Executive of the Nene Education Trust, added: “At the Nene Education Trust, we are committing to developing character, raising aspirations and celebrating achievement.
“We take great pride in our role of raising aspirations for pupils and their families in Raunds and Rushden and this initiative is an incredible example of the wealth of opportunities on offer at our schools.”
Now certified ‘farmventors’, the school has submitted their best inventions to be judged alongside schools from across the country. With winners announced shortly, finalists will be invited to present their ideas at a prestigious event at the Houses of Parliament, with the overall national winners set to turn their whole school into a farm for the day.