Making your farm visit a success

Farm activities for KS1 History

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KS1 History activities that can be carried out before, during or after a school visit.

Curriculum area: Chronological understanding


  • Make a timeline of a day spent at farm; a farmer's day; a milking cow's day.
  • Sequence the journey of milk from cow to milking to shop.

Resources needed:

  • Farm visit
  • Series of pictures of milking process

Curriculum area: Changes within Living Memory


  • Comparing old and new - machinery, vehicles, milking styles, tools; discuss differences, sort pictures.
  • Divide photographs/pictures into past and present, order and place on time line.
  • Draw observations from artefacts.
  • Butter: discuss picture of churning; try churning own butter in a jar with tight lid on; use creamy milk and shake (for a very long time!).
  • Wool: children try carding fleece (on two hairbrushes) and spinning (tie fleece onto pencil with lump of plasticine on the end).
  • Fields: looking at old strip-farming map and map with new-style large fields.
  • Discuss how strip farming worked - divide up a pretend field between the class members; what might happen if one person didn't look after their land; why do farmers, have huge fields now;
    visit some local allotments - how are they arranged?
  • Changes in food storage: look at examples of modern storage; tins, vacuum packed, freezers, pickle. What happens if we don't store food carefully?
  • Try old methods of salting, drying foodstuffs and compare with food which hasn't been treated.
  • Jobs on farm: discuss changes, look at pictures of milking in past/milking today. How many people worked on these farms? Harvesting using a sickle v combine harvester.
  • Make a poster advertising jobs people used to do.
  • Look at works of art from the past from a range of sources showing rural life and farming. What do they tell us?

Resources needed:

  • Photographs and pictures of old and modern artefacts
  • Pictures of butter making in the past, plastic jar or container, creamy milk
  • Fleece (sometimes available from the farm being visited), hairbrushes, pencils, plasticine
  • Maps of past and present field systems
  • Tins, vacuum-packed items, jars of pickles
  • Photos and pictures of milking, harvesting today, people working on farms both past and present