The Secondary Education Programme

Secondary Education Officer, Sarah Lloyd, welcomes groups to the Botanic Garden throughout the year. Groups are welcome to arrange joint visits with the other museums and collections of the University, especially the Museum of Natural History.

Programmes available for 2012

Science Programmes

Extreme Survivors Key Stage 3

Discover how plants survive extreme environments from deserts to tropical wetlands. Study the curious plants in the insectivorous plant collection and find out why plants are true survivors.

Plants and Climate Change Key Stage 4

Find out how plants are responding to climate change and how this might affect people and the environment.

Conservation Preservation Key Stage 5

Think about the reasons for and ways of maintaining biodiversity. 

Examples are used to demonstrate the difference between conservation and preservation and illustrate the principles of conservation on a local, national and international scale.


Citizenship Programmes

Our Sustainable Future Key Stages 3 and 4

Find out who benefits from fair trade. What is the real cost of a pair of jeans? What are the alternatives to paper from wood pulp? Examples from the Garden show how plant resources can be used in a sustainable way.


Art Programmes

Art in the Garden All Key Stages

Explore the historic Walled Garden, the less formal Lower Garden and the exotic plants in The Glasshouses. The suggested length for a visit is between 1 and 2 hours.

On arrival at the Garden groups will be met. Students and teachers will be given a short introduction to the collection, told about the best places to work and the expectations of the Garden staff.

Teachers can choose to have a longer introduction to the collection in which students are told about the work of artists associated with each venue.


Geography Programmes

People, Plants and Places Key Stage 3

Compare our desert and rainforest glasshouses. Which plants survive best in each place and why? How do people use natural resources and local knowledge to live in different places?


Cross curricula Programmes

Beautiful Biodiversity for Key Stage 3 Art, Science and Citizenship

During their visit students will explore the exotic plants in the desert and rainforest glasshouses, find out how people use plants in different parts of the World, and discover how plants are essential in a balanced ecosystem and why biodiversity is essential. Students will hear about the work of Henri Rousseau who described his visits to botanic gardens like entering into a dream. Students will then have time to sketch and take photographs.

It is hoped that some of the work from this session can be used to promote biodiversity and conservation to primary schools using post cards and posters of your students work.

Micro Life for Key Stage 4 Art and Science

In this programme students are introduced to the diversity of species in the Garden and the special features plants have to enable them to survive in a wide range of habitats. Students explore the Glasshouses studying adaptations, sketching and taking photographs.

Students examine species from the rainforest and desert under the microscope, and find out why the plants are special at the microscopic level.

This workshop is inspired by the work of Rob Kesseler who is a former artist in residence at the Garden. Rob’s work Hortus in Vitro, is on permanent display in the glasshouses.

Northern Lights for Key Stage 3 English, Science, Art and Exploring Oxford University

In this programme students visit several of the locations that inspired the Northern Lights trilogy written by Philip Pullman. These include the Botanic Garden, Pitt Rivers Museum and Exeter College.

Students may also visit other historic collections that would have been explored by Lyra in a fictional representation of the city. These include the Museum of the History of Science and the Museum of Natural History.

Activities can be arranged in some or all of these venues. Some activities are taught by Museum and Garden education officers while others are led by the students own teachers.


Useful Information