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Placement diary - teenage group at a wildlife centre

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´╗┐My placement is at a Wildlife Centre in the beautiful park surrounded by flowers and trees. It is a pleasant and peaceful place. Our group consists 15 of ten 14 years old secondary school students. After the first week two girls left and in the fourth week two new boys joined the group. The group also consisted of the teaching assistant, four volunteers and two community project officers. We are gaining practical experience of countryside work and wildlife conservation. This includes activities such as identification, surveying and monitoring of wildlife; habitat management such as coppicing, scrub clearance, hedgerow planting; wildlife gardening; safe use and maintenance of hand tools and basic green wood working. Nearly all our sessions are outdoors, therefore we have to come prepared with appropriate outdoor clothing. As well as the students gaining practical experience they are also learning how to work in teams, problem solving, learning how to take instructions, confidence building through hands-on learning. The woodland environment may be used to learn about more abstract concepts such as mathematics and communication. This diary is based on time spent one day a week over a five week period. Diary entry one was my first day but was the children second day together. 06.03.2014 Jack? gave us an outline of the placement and people with whom we are going to be working with today. Everyone was introduced to each other. ...read more.


There was also non-verbal communication, guessing from ours facial expressions when we weren?t happy or unsure about something. We listened to each other and asked questions when something went wrong. The day also showed that there was a lot of respect for each other and how Jack was monitoring the situation all the time. Alice wasn?t afraid to use the ??loo with the view?? because Jack was making sure that no one followed her; however, not everyone felt that confident. Our group finished tree planting but a leader could have helped with encouragement and the cooperation when task were being shared out. In future I would probably suggest this. 20.03.2014 There was choice of two activities; all the girls decided to plant the seeds and the boys chose wood working. I feel that there was deliberate divide between boys and girls and Jack could have managed better. Alice found the activity difficult because the seeds were very small and she kept losing them. I helped Alice at the beginning to organise her pots and she stopped losing them. She became quite creative as she decided that instead of planting one kind of seed in each tray she is going to make it more interesting mixing up the rows. I noticed that she gets bored quite quickly, but this time she really got involved. After lunch we went to play hide and seek in the maze. ...read more.


They were all then given a knife to shape wood. Jack told them that he trusted them and he believed that they were going to use them sensibly. However, Alice did not want to use the knife she wanted to cut the bushes and she asked me if I would go with her. Alice asked me if I could sing for her but I felt embarrassed and I didn?t know what to sing and I refused. However I asked her to sing for me but she say she will only sing if I sing for her. I sang ?Lala? because I didn?t have anything else in my mind at that moment and later on she was singing too. I pointed out a bird for her (robin) and later on she was pointing it to other girls and Jack was quite impressed. For some reason she wanted to stay away from the group that day. It could be because they had knives or she was afraid of using them herself or maybe she wanted to spend some time with me cutting the bushes. I insisted that we should go and see what the rest of the group were doing but she wasn?t interested so I went on my own and she didn?t mind it. She was proud of herself at the end because she managed to cut a way through the bushes. I learned today that some people needed more attention than the others to feel a lot better about themselves and can achieve more. Today I observed that the girls started to recognise the wildlife around them. ...read more.

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