A GROUP of excited youngsters were treated to a lesson with a difference when Royton Hall School allowed them to swop pencils for pens.
But there wasn’t any writing involved as these pens contained animals from Jacaranda Farm.
And the sheep, pigs, goats and hens seemed to enjoy their day out as much as the pupils relished interacting with their new ‘classmates’.
Some pupils needed a little more encouragement than others to help feed and stroke the welcome day visitors.
But farmer Roger Sayle and Gillian Hallworth, a former Royton Hall special needs teacher, believes the sessions can prove as valuable as mainstream teaching.
“I have always farmed and had animals,” explained Gillian.
“And I have had the dream and vision of bringing the two together and meeting the needs of the children.
“It’s a life experiences that these children might not be able to get.
“In some schools we go into the children don’t know what a sheep is or what a pig is. They can’t name them or say what they do.
“Children who are shy don’t want to get involved but after a little bit of time, their confidence grows and they will have a go.
“It breaks down those barriers. It’s real life,” added Gillian who took her inspiration for the business name from her time in Australia and the Jacaranda tree growing in the garden.
“Royton Hall is one of the first schools we have done this at,” she explained.
“But we’ve also been to schools in Rochdale, where we are based, others in Oldham and also in Salford.
“It’s been a pleasure to come back to Royton Hall and see the interaction of the children.”
For more information about Jacaranda Farm visit their website: jacarandafarm.wixsite.com/mobilefarm