Caedmon takes the classroom to the beach

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Year 8 pupils from Caedmon school took their learning outside when they spent the day on the beach and on the riverbanks looking at erosion, pollution and water flow. Aaron Brass, Brad Lewis, Danyal Tidy and Ben Nixon tell the story.

On Tuesday 8th March two classes from Caedmon school took their learning out of the classroom. We dressed sensibly in our outdoor clothing- it was going to be cold and possibly wet (and not just from rain).

We started our day off by going down to Sandsend and doing a treasure hunt as we walked through the village. When we got to the car park we had to draw a field sketch of all features we could see such as the cliffs, headland, bay and the Scar (wave cut platform).

After that we had to sit on the slip way and count how many waves broke every minute .We did this five times and worked out the average from the results.

When you count the waves you can tell what type of waves they are. If there are less than nine waves a minute the waves are constructive and build up the beach and if there are more than 15 a minute they are destructive and take the beach away. The waves were constructive that day.

We walked from the sea wall to the sea and drew a beach profile picture including every little pebble or grain of sand. Our group then walked over the beach to see some builders and talk about what happened to damage the revetments.

The workman told us that it was only safe to fix it at certain times of the year when the tide was low.

We enjoyed the walk along the beach as we had to jump across two rivers and as the tide was low we got to see about 40 -50 starfishes in the rock pools.

The bus dropped us of at Maybeck. By this time we were starving. We got off and had our dinner sitting on the bank beside the river. A Beacon Farm ice cream van was there and nearly sold out of ice creams.

Ice cream sellers and children are a “win win” situation - some of us still owe Mrs Locker for ice creams (I think she might be waiting a while).

Our first task was to draw a sketch of upstream and downstream.

In this sketch we had to include the valley sides, the river bed and also the channel.

On the downstream view we saw erosion happening on the banks and the bits that were being worn away were being transported downstream.

The area also experiences quite a lot of weathering from the weather, animals and plants (and of course school children).

After this we got into our forms and our task was to measure the height of the water and the width of the river bank.

We got our equipment which was a rope for measuring the width of the bank, a metre stick to see how high the water had reached and a ping pong ball to see how fast the river flows down stream.

Our next activity was to check pollution levels and to see how dirty or clean the water was. We did kick samples and to see what animals (fauna) live in the water. We found stone fly nymphs and lots of tiny may fly nymphs. So from that we could tell the water was quite clean.

We also had to look at what human activity has been in the area and who uses the place. We found sheep farming, bridges, roads, forestry, walkers, school children from Caedmon and East Barnby and also ice cream sellers.

We enjoyed our geography field trip. It was good to learn out of the classroom. Our favourite bit was getting in the water at Maybeck. It was fun to get wet but very cold. The ice creams were pretty good too - it’s never too cold for an icecream!