RiverLAB Project

Class 3 have been working this term with the Tees Rivers Trust's RiverLAB project which has been designed to educate and nurture children's interest in their local river, through a combination of scientific investigation and creative expression. They went on an expedition to Piercebridge Beck (it rained, of course!) and met Sara who showed them how to find the creatures that live in the river.

They looked under stones and in the mud at the bottom of the river and used the nets to scoop up any creatures they found. Then they put them into some collecting trays to observe them more carefully. The children used hand lenses to see how many legs they had and then used the identification charts to find out what the creature was called.

The Tees Rivers Trust's RiverLAB encourages children's creative responses to their local environment too and Year 4 followed up their fieldwork by creating wire sculptures of the animals they had found and creating ink prints depicting the river habitat. Sara showed the children how to bend the wire and it was quite tricky at first. Some children made freshwater shrimps and others burrowing mayfly nymphs.

The final session was an opportunity to make 'habitat maps' of the river using ink printing. Most of the children hadn't experienced this before so it was an interesting challenge, and it was amazing to see the results on paper after the printing had taken place. The children used a variety of different materials to make the marks including pieces of wood and bubble wrap. It was fun, a bit messy and they were very proud of the results.