On Friday 5 April ZSL teamed up with the National Literacy Trust and Walkers Books to bring a group of Year 2 students to ZSL London Zoo and take part in a fantastic event. Hosted by none other than the author Michael Rosen and in celebration for the 30th year anniversary of his ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ story book.
This much-loved children’s book is a classic, engaging read that guarantees children and adults alike are joining in on the movements and sounds that brings the bear hunt to life.
‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ is an immersive read that helps children to understand the relationship between letters and sounds; a fundamental literacy skill for infants to learn and far easier to pick up when they are reading for pleasure.
Michael Rosen kick started the day with animated storytelling at its finest. Acting out short stories and asking the students to sing-along in repetition, of which the 6 and 7 year old enjoyed being a part of the reading. Whole class reading is an effective teaching method according to TES, where DM Crosby explains that “children will pick up on good reading style performances from teachers” and “eventually, they will start to emulate you in their own performances”.
Students were then taken on their very own bear hunt. Journeying around the zoo, the interactive trail took students on a multi-sensory learning experience where they mimicked the words and actions from the book. “ZSL London Zoo was the ideal setting for the trail” said the National Literacy Trust “and the students found the fuzzy bear in no time at all!”
Kerry Bailey, Community & Learning Manager at ZSL London Zoo explained: “We were absolutely delighted to be part of the celebrations for this iconic book that brings together people and wildlife – something our own educational sessions strive to achieve here every day at ZSL London Zoo. It’s special events like this that offer children a unique learning opportunity, imagining the characters in the book, to then seeing them in real life – here at ZSL London Zoo. We want to connect schools and communities back with wildlife across the London boroughs both from inside and outside the Zoo.”
There are so many wonderful opportunities to discover literacy outside of the classroom, promoting reading and writing in a whole new light. Bring your class along to ZSL London Zoo for an immersive learning experience. Why not challenge students to create a learning trail by using our zoo map, or use this trail we’ve already created.
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