Showground supports Lincolnshire schools with virtual food learning initiative

Showground supports Lincolnshire schools with virtual food learning initiative

School children across Lincolnshire are taking part in a selection of virtual educational activities this week (25-29 January) as part of Farmhouse Breakfast Week, hosted by the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society (LAS).

The LAS, which operates from Lincolnshire Showground is a non-profit making charitable organisation, set up in 1869 with the aim of educating people across the county about food, farming and a sustainable environment.

The engaging and hands-on activity programme – which is now in its seventh year – will be held virtually for the first time ever, due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, to allow children to get involved and learn something new.

Organisers of the Farmhouse Breakfast Week have put together ‘farm-to-fork’ activities and video cookery sessions, as well as a resource box delivered to the school including a teacher guide, instructions, worksheets, resources and locally sourced ingredients.

Jayne Southall

Jayne Southall, CEO of the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society at the Lincolnshire Showground said: “As a non-profit making charitable organisation, the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society is passionate about promoting and educating on the importance of food production, farming, the countryside and sustainability within the local Lincolnshire community through all of our events.

“We are really pleased that our annual Farmhouse Breakfast Week event was still able to go ahead, despite the current situation. We felt it was incredibly important that we offered this as a free learning resource for all schools to access, as well as donating all the ingredients.

“Learning how to make a simple yet substantial meal is more important than ever at the moment, with many children not receiving free school meals. Children of key workers, vulnerable children and teachers all have enough on their plates right now, so we wanted to make it as easy as possible for them to get involved.”

Schools taking part in this year’s programme include Bishop King CE Primary School and Leslie Manser Primary School, both located in Lincoln, as well as Leys Farm Junior School in Scunthorpe

Kathryn Malone, UKS2 phase leader at Bishop King CE Primary School, said: “Our children thoroughly enjoyed participating in the well-organised event last year, which is why we were keen to get involved again this year.

“Some of our children are from low-income households where they do not necessarily receive breakfast before coming to school.  Last year they were so pleased that they had been taught to make a filling meal of an omelette with only a couple of ingredients.  A number of children then used their box of eggs to create omelettes for their families at home.”

Rosie Crust, education development manager at the Lincolnshire Showground, said: “We would normally welcome a number of schools to the Lincolnshire Showground for a morning programme of interactive workshops and cookery sessions, which we were unable to do this year. It gives students the opportunity to get hands on with fun, farm-to-fork activities focussed on the most important meal of the day – breakfast.

“We were determined that Breakfast Week will still go ahead on a virtual platform, allowing schools to still access the provision and learning resources in the classroom and through remote learning platforms.

“Our priority with Breakfast Week is to the teach children about the importance of a healthy and nutritious breakfast, while developing their knowledge about where breakfast comes from and the journey it goes on.  A number of children are from households with possible lower than average income, therefore it is even more important that these children learn the importance of eating a healthy balanced breakfast to set them up for the day.”

The virtual workshops, which are suitable for KS2, years three, four, five and six, will teach the children a selection of engaging and practical activities including how to make and plait bread, bake bacon and cheese muffins, and learn how to make omelettes and oat pancakes.

As part of the educational week-long programme, schools are also given the opportunity to connect directly through a live video call with the LAS education team and expert supporters for an introductory session, a concluding session and to ask any questions.

Rosie added: “We have some really great local companies involved in this year’s Breakfast Week, which are donating ingredients, including Ladies in Pigs, Scaman’s Eggs, Lincolnshire Community Foundation, and Waitrose and Partners. We’ve also had some fantastic local producers and industry representatives providing on-site videos contributing to the learning resources.”

Debbie Wilson, chairwoman of Ladies in Pigs, said: “Ladies in Pigs is happy to work in collaboration with Lincolnshire Agricultural Society’s education team to promote the importance of breakfast during Farmhouse Breakfast Week. We have been involved with the face-to-face sessions at the Showground for a number of years, but COVID-19 restrictions have meant that we have had to change things up and have produced some virtual resources so that teachers and students can still be involved.

“The session we do is based around the amazing Red Tractor food that Britain produces and how much of this can be used to provide us with a nutritious breakfast.  It also has games and activities to help to recognise the logo on food when out shopping and we have included a variety of activities, videos and worksheets.  We would encourage schools to cook our delicious breakfast recipes in school with the children who are there or invite the children to do so remotely, with adult supervision, if they are home schooling.”

Farmhouse Breakfast Week: The facts and figures from 2020:

Number of children involved in Breakfast Week 2020: 147

Number of eggs given to children: 882

Number of omelettes flipped during the week: 60

1 metre squared of wheat grown produces 25 pancakes

Total number of mileage travelled by schools: 151.2 miles

Lincolnshire Showground

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