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Walton on the Naze: Chicken club helps to bring lessons to life for fledgling primary school learners

PUBLISHED: 16:00 06 April 2014

Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Lucy with the chick

Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Lucy with the chick

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A brood of happy hens are settling into their new home where they are helping bring lessons to life for a primary school’s 300 pupils.

Chicken Club at Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Seth and Lucy with the chicks. Chicken Club at Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Seth and Lucy with the chicks.

To the delight of children at Hamford Primary Academy, Walton on the Naze, the hens have successfully hatched 10 chicks just in time for Easter celebrations.

Friends of Hamford Primary Academy at Walton invested in a chicken coop, food, equipment and three hens in February thanks to a donation of £1,195 from the East of England Co-op from its Membership and Community Engagement fund.

Fundraiser and parent Kathryn Aiken said: “We are all delighted with the hens and we’d like to send a big thank you to the East of England Co-op for making it possible.”

Last month, Phil Hartwell and Jackie Bowis, directors of the East of England Co-op, visited the school to hear more from the pupils and teachers about how the chickens have transformed their lessons and what they have learned

Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Phil Hartwell, Benedick Ashmore-Short, Jackie Bowis with parents and pupils of Hamford Academy Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Phil Hartwell, Benedick Ashmore-Short, Jackie Bowis with parents and pupils of Hamford Academy

Phil Hartwell, chairman of Membership and Community, said: “It’s been a real pleasure to visit Hamford Primary Academy – the pupils are clearly enjoying having the hens in school.

“We are very happy to support this project which is inspiring young people about the world around them and helping them to develop new skills.”

The school has established a Chicken Club involving 70 children from Reception through to Year 6 who take turns to care for the chickens helped by a group of volunteer parents.

Academy principal Benedick Ashmore-Short said: ”Observing and looking after the hens and their chicks is a wonderful way for the children to re-engage with the natural world and also to discover more about how food reaches them and what a healthy diet and lifestyle consists of.”

Chicken Club at Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Proud pupils show off their chickens to Directors from the East of England Co-op Chicken Club at Hamford Primary Academy at Walton on the Naze - Proud pupils show off their chickens to Directors from the East of England Co-op

Hamford Friends is made up of parents, teachers, administrators and other concerned adults who discuss ways to promote quality education, strive to expand the arts, encourage community involvement, and work for a healthy environment and safe neighbourhood.

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