Kidding around on school farm

By Wendy Shaw

The playful new kids at Larmenier Catholic Primary School just love being the centre of attention.

Eight arrivals have joined the menagerie at the St Leonards school, in northern Tasmania, with a couple more on the way.

Principal Jacqui Lawless explained that as well as goats, the school farm is also home to chickens, a cow, sheep, alpacas, donkeys, rabbits and guinea pigs.

“The farm supports students’ learning, particularly in relation to the implementation of the Australian curriculum with an emphasis on sustainability and a practical approach to learning,” Ms Lawless said.

“Students learn about technology used at the farm and the garden, and it shows children options in what they can be and do [in future]. It also links to many subject areas, including Science and English.

“But most importantly, it brings our children joy.”

Ms Lawless said the farm, which was established about 20 years ago, also reinforced important messages in Pope Francis’s second encyclical Laudato si’, about care for the environment and sustainability

“Care for our ‘common home’ is what it’s about,” Ms Lawless added.

“And the importance of the traditions of the school’s founding Sisters of Nazareth – who emphasise the core values of love, compassion, patience, justice, hospitality and respect – apply equally to the animal kingdom.”

New baby goats are born at the school farm around this time each year. They will be sold to help support the farm program.

Photo: Year 2 students Violet Clifford, 7, and Esther Birtwistle, 8, help to care for the three-week-old baby goats at Larmenier Catholic Primary School, St Leonards. Photo by Wendy Shaw.

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