Collierley Primary School – Heathland Detectives

Durham Wildlife Trust Heathland Heartlands, News, Uncategorized

The Heathland Heartlands Project has been working with Collierley Primary School which is located in Dipton on the edge of Harelaw Heath. The pupils from year 5 and 6 have been exploring their local heath and learning about the contrasting habitats on their doorstep. They have investigated the mini beasts living beneath the heather and, using their detective skills, have worked out how different mini beats have adapted to live in the different habitats.

The pupils have also used their mathematical skills to measure the pathways and have studied OS maps to work out how habitats are linked to form wildlife corridors.


Pupils work out where habitat corridors are using local OS Maps

The outdoor learning sessions are ongoing and we aim to explore more when the weather gets warmer including a survey to count and identify the butterflies and bumblebees that live around the school. The pupils will learn how to catch, observe and identify these species and will learn how to submit the data to ERIC (Enviromental Records Information Centre).

Exploring the heath and surrounding habitats

Pupils of Collierley Primary Schoo explore the heath and surrounding habitats

The Heathland Heartlands volunteers have also been busy preparing the school’s wildlife and nature garden for growing. The pupils wanted to be able to grow food in the garden as well as having areas to encourage wildlife. The volunteers have prepared the beds for the pupils to plant up their chosen produce alongside the wild flowers which have been planted by the volunteers. The pupils will replicate the habitats they have been studying up on the heath and will build similar mini habitats in their nature garden.

Wild flower planting

Heathland Heartlands volunteers preparing the beds for growing potatoes alongside the wild flower areas



Volunteers working hard in the poor weather conditions to prepare the raised planting beds