At the start of February, Lower 4 students visited the Living Rainforest in Newbury as part of their geography curriculum. Pupils enjoyed guided tours about ‘Amazing Adaptations’ and how plants and animals adapt to live in the rainforest and there were many fascinating animals and species to look at in the berkshire 'rainforest.'
Students learnt about design in nature and how leaves in the understorey had drip tips on their leaves so that the rainwater would run off quickly, not damaging the plants. Other fascinating plants included the dumb cane, black magic and the pitcher plant; each of the plants have different, specialist properties so they are adapted to the rainforest climate. For example, the pitcher plant is shaped like a jug and has a leaf on top of it, and when it rains the leaf protects the sweet smelly liquid inside so it does not dilute; the insects fall in the ‘pitcher’ which slowly digests them with acid.
Lower 4 also saw many animals, including a sleepy sloth called Cinnamon, the armadillo, and pygmy marmosets – which were one of the favourites. The Living Rainforest also housed red billed Toucans, a carpet python, Goeldi monkeys and many different birds including turacos, and dwarf crocodile.
The Living Rainforest was an excellent experience where the L4 learned so much and were a credit to the school with their behaviour. They agreed that it was amazing to have first-hand experience of the what a real rainforest looked and felt like (with the high temperatures and rain).
Thanks go to Mrs Atkins for organising the trip and to Mrs Milward, Mrs Eels, Mrs Baker and Mrs Cowgill who accompanied the visit.