Calling all teachers and young people! Take part in a special mission from the National Education Nature Park on Outdoor Classroom Day (Thursday 23 May) as we become habitat heroes!

What does this mission involve? Together, we’ll discover the spaces that can host precious wildlife on learning sites nationwide. By following prompts and exploring our surroundings, we’ll discover the secret homes where creatures big and small might live.

Perhaps it’s a fence panel that spiders might use for spinning webs, a pile of leaves where worms could hide, or a pool of water where you could see frogs and birds taking a dip! Upload your findings to see them alongside all of the other spaces for wildlife being discovered across the country on this day

Want to get involved?

Whether you have already joined the Nature Park or not, this activity is the perfect way to take your learning outside this Outdoor Classroom Day, to connect to nature and see the impact we can have when we all work together. It’s also great way to get ready to start your Nature Park journey. By getting familiar with what homes for wildlife you have on your site, you and your class will be prepared for the mapping your site activities, an essential first step in the Nature Park five-step process.

• Visit the Habitat Heroes page on the Nature Park website to find out more
• On Outdoor Classroom Day (Thursday 23 May), gather your class and teacher to explore your learning site
• Use the prompts to identify and log the habitats you find, and together we’ll build a picture of all the different homes for wildlife being discovered in schools, nurseries, and colleges across the country on this day!

For more information and to take part, please visit the Habitat heroes page on the National Education Nature Park website.

Take part in City Nature Challenge: share wildlife sightings from your school

At the end of April, schools, nurseries and colleges will have their first chance to record the wildlife living on their site and start collecting data that will ultimately help to evidence their biodiversity gains and guide their decisions of how and where to implement habitat enhancements. The City Nature Challenge is a global collaboration/friendly-competition where cities and regions in 46 countries around the world aim to record as much wildlife as possible over four days, Friday 26 April – Monday 29 April 2024.

22 regions of the UK are taking part in the City Nature Challenge, but observations can be made anywhere, you don’t need to be in a participating region for your sightings to add to the Nature Park map. Observations of animals, plants or fungi can be gathered using the iNaturalistUK app and website, and we’ll be using this tool throughout the Nature Park programme to gather species data. Teachers must follow a specific set of steps when creating their account on the iNaturalistUK website for their data to be drawn into the Nature Park map. It’s described in this news blog and an activity page has been developed. Please encourage the schools, colleges and nurseries you’re in touch with to take part – we’re excited to see the map start to fill with nature observations!

Further information on getting ready for the challenge and setting up your iNaturalistUK account so you can record wildlife is available on the National Education Nature Park website.

1000 Sites are now on the Education Nature Park Map!

Exciting news! 1000 sites are now on the National Education Nature Park map! Each glowing dot represents a school, nursery, or college championing wildlife, connecting to nature and learning new skills. If you want to join them and get involved you can find out more in our National Education Nature Park pages.