G-force, adrenaline and teaching

Date Posted: 27/01/2015

Teaching can often be described as a roller coaster ride, but at Drayton Manor – that’s not such a bad thing.

This Staffordshire theme park has developed an entire education and outreach programme around its attractions, including its white knuckle rides and its 15-acre zoo.

What’s more, the education team has achieved the nationally recognised indicator of good quality educational provision, the Learning Outside the Classroom Quality Badge, ensuring that it meets schools' learning and risk management needs.

The park offers a range of interactive educational sessions designed with Pre-school, Primary, Secondary and college aged pupils in mind.

For Reception and Key Stage 1 there are a selection of workshops available, including experiencing an Animal Encounter, where children can meet and interact with the animals in the discovery centre, Fur, Feathers and Scales, where children can get hands-on experience exploring the appearance of animals;, and also the popular Dinosaur Discovery, where children can role play as a palaeontologist.

The Primary School zoo sessions on offer include experiencing an Animal Encounter, Dinosaur Discovery, Habitats and Adaptation, Teeth and Eating, Conservation, Design a Zoo and Animal Care and Enrichment.

Learn how the rollercoasters work

Primary school children can also participate in workshops such as Rollercoaster Design, Rollercoaster Forces and Creative Coasters.

The range of park sessions on offer are centred on the mechanisms of rides, including how the exciting rollercoasters work and the forces behind them, as well as giving the pupils the opportunity to design their very own ride too.

The workshops are designed to engage students as well as enable them to take on a more independent role by partaking in group work.

Workshops for Secondary school students

Theme park workshops available to Secondary school and college students include Sustainability and Land Use, Supporting Child Development through Leisure, Ride Mechanics, Rollercoaster Design, Creative Coasters and Design a Diner.

Also on offer to Secondary and college students are business sessions including Drayton Manor Theme Park as a Business, which gives pupils a behind the scenes look at how the park operates, what it aims to do, how it attracts and retains visitors in an increasingly competitive market, and how it keeps its team of staff happy and motivated.

The Customer Service sessions enable pupils to learn about the principles and policies of good customer service and complaint handling procedures.

The education department also presents interactive talks for pupils interested in learning more about Marketing, Human Resources and ICT and how these areas are put in to practise outside the classroom.

Resources for teachers and pupils

If visiting out of season, Drayton Manor offers an Education Activity Day which can include a combination of:; an education session, a park or zoo tour, animal enrichment making, behind the scenes experiences and it may even be possible to open a couple of attractions. Outreach programmes are also available during this time, where the team will visit schools.

Drayton Manor Education also has a newsletter for schools called Discover Drayton, which has all the latest news and offers, along with sections about careers, educational talks, outdoor lesson ideas, and much more.

These are available for teachers to download free from the website, along with resources for schools.

For more information visit www.draytonmanor.co.uk or e-mail the education department on education@draytonmanor.co.uk.


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