Pupils play ranger at Holyrood Park

Posted: 05/12/2018 | Education

Pupils from the Royal Blind School have been visiting the Historic Environment Scotland centre in Holyrood Park, Edinburgh, throughout the term for interdisciplinary learning. 

Collage of three photos. Pupils Amy, Aiden and Bo play with leaves outside, throwing them. Amy washes a tractor with a water hose. Bo enjoys tactile play with leaves and twigs.

And in October, the pupils spent time in the HES’ yard, learning about the duties of a Park Ranger by exploring a tractor, and helping to clean it with a hosepipe, helping to tidy piles of leaves with a leaf blower, and learning how to use a walkie talkie. 

The session was led by Lily Laing from the Historic Environment Scotland Ranger Service. 

She said: “This was a conservation task that demonstrates how the ranger service and us ground staff look after the park for the enjoyment of the public, whilst keeping it maintained for the Queen.

“This task was focussed on exploring the role of a ranger in carrying out this responsibility. It’s a practical way of learning that incorporates lots of different disciplines. Sound is particularly important to the pupils. After walking around the tractor and getting familiar with its size and the way it feels, the pupils were able to sit in the driver’s seat. We showed them the keys, how to turn the engine on, how loud the engine is, what the horn sounds like.” 

Previous sessions have covered history and geography, including Iron Age and Volcano-themed events. 

Lily added: “We went into Craigmillar Castle to learn about Mary Queen of Scots. We’ve also had an Iron Age day where the pupils dressed in Iron Age attire, made bread, and met people acting as different characters, for example a druid and a farmer. 

“The pupils are so well behaved and inquisitive, it’s a pleasure to have them here and see their confidence and independence grow.”