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Louth YFC supports Tractors into Schools

Louth YFC supports Tractors into Schools

Members of Louth YFC in Lincolnshire took part in the recent Tractors into Schools scheme, which is organised by Lincolnshire Agricultural Society. This annual initiative connects farmers with local schools in Lincolnshire to spread the message about food and farming. Chair Alec Newlove from Louth YFC shares his experience of being involved

Q1. How did Louth YFC get involved in Tractors into Schools?

We are very lucky in Lincolnshire that the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society take an interest in Tractors into Schools Week and provide a lot of support.

Before Christmas they get in touch with the clubs and ask if we would like to be involved in the scheme again and how many schools we can visit. The Society makes the initial contact with the schools to see if they would like us to visit. Our contact is then passed to the school to start the conversation about when we can come and what we will do. The Society also provide us with activity packs to help us decide what activities we would like to do on the day.

It's something we have always done, so it seems right to continue to do it. We feel it’s right to try and educate pupils about what is happening in the fields around them and help them understand where their food comes from. We also hope that we can highlight to them what a great career working in agriculture can be.

Q2. What was involved in the visits to schools?

On the day we take a tractor with us to the school and also plan several other activities for the children to get involved in.

These activities include pots of different types of seeds for the children to feel and guess what they are. We also have different products set out on the table and pupils have to guess what product goes with what type of seed.

We also have pictures of animals and food products for children to match up.

Outside the members stood with the tractor, talked and showed pictures to pupils of what happens in the field to get a crop from farm to fork.

If there is enough time we may also get the pupils to act out being different parts of a combine. And finally, pupils can each sit in the tractor and ask members questions.

Louth YFC - Tractors into school seeds

Q3. What was the reaction like from the children you saw?

Very happy and positive reactions from the children and teachers. Obviously, their favourite part of the visit is sitting in the tractor, but we like to keep the other activities as exciting and engaging as possible.

Q4. Would you recommend other YFCs get involved in similar initiatives?

Absolutely. At times, farming can receive bad press so it's important to get out there and share more positivity. It is also important to educate children about what is happening around them in the fields and do this in an engaging and exciting way. You have the chance to attract the future generation of farmers and agricultural workers – I think that any members and helpers involved in the initiative take a lot from that.

If your YFC is interested in connecting with local schools to promote food and farming, check out the resources NFYFC developed with LEAF in the Countryside Classroom.