Monday 22nd May 2017
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What a fabulous day children and staff had when they visited the Dark Peak above Hathersage with Peak Park Rangers Rose and Tom and Paul from the Moorlands Discovery Center. Living in and around Hartington the children were contrasting their locality in the White Peak against the Dark Peak. This investigation was delivered through challenges, tasks and many ‘hands on experiences’. These included ‘Weaseling’, living in a shelter, rock jumping, blowing bubbles and using compasses to determine wind direction. Pupils utillised preciously taught geographical skills such as map reading and basic survival techniques to enhance their experiences to the full!
Harry particularly enjoyed learning about the wild life and avidly watched for the Ring Ouzel bird but unfortunately to no avail during his visit. He quoted: ‘That’s a good place to live in the rocks because they can see all around them but no animals can catch them or steel their eggs.’
The Upper KS2 group had an interesting and informative walk to the summit of Higger Tor we spent an enjoyable hour studying the rocks, flora and fauna indigenous to the Dark Peak, discovering three varieties of heather and even learning how to identify edible berries such as bilberries and cow berries.
After eating lunch with the most spectacular view of the surrounding hills we walked back to the Moorland Discovery Centre via Carl Wark (an Iron Age hill fort). During the walk we learnt how to use a compass to set the map and used the ordnance survey map to identify various landmarks in the distance.
We were excited to spot wildlife including curlews, a small frog, the northern eggar caterpillar and skylarks but we were not so fortunate to spot the illusive Ring Ouzel.
We all had a fabulous day out that we will never forget in the dramatic setting of the Dark Peak – a complete contrast to the White Peak in which we all live and go to school.
Thanks to the Peak Park Ranger Service for making our day so memorable.