Natural History GCSE – you can’t protect what you can’t name

Progress has been made with the introduction of a new Natural History GCSE which is great news.

inews wrote the following: “Natural History GCSE is being planned to reconnect teenagers with wildlife” The movement has been pioneered by Caroline Lucus of the Green Party (Twitter) and Mary Colwell (Twitter)

They key takeaway for us is summed up by the 2 quotes taken from the inews article..

A study in August 2019 found that 51 per cent of UK children were unable to identify a stinging nettle

“You only really form a relationship with something by giving it a name,”

It’s all too easy for companies like BeVenturesome to ‘bus’ young people in and out of a wonderful natural environment without them actually learning much about it. As the quote put, how can we expect young people to look after the environment when they can’t name much of it!?

Last year we tried a ‘wildlife bingo’ game on the hike where pupils had to tick off the plants or animals that they saw on the hike. It went down really well but next year I feel we can make a few improvements.

  • Do it more than once so they stand more chance of remembering the plants
  • Have more child friendly facts about each plant
  • Take more time over it.
  • Tell the pupils why we are doing it and the importance of it at the start if the week

Hopefully, in a few years, pupils will be thinking back to their alpine wildlife bingo game in Morzine while studying for their Natural History GSCE!

One question remains, will you be allowed to stair out the window in a Natural History class..

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