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Aug 14th 2018 Back to latest news

Why Farms are great for Children
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Getting out into nature is one of the best days you can have as a family, especially if you live in a large town or city. In fact there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that regular contact with nature is good for your mental health.

This is hardly surprising when you consider that nature is . . . well, natural! Not to mention the peace and quiet and a good dose of vitamin D from the sunshine.

A day on the farm is rather unique because it’s genuinely a great day out for the whole family, with something for everyone to enjoy. Even if it’s just the coffee and delicious homemade cake to keep the grown ups going…

Nature

One of the best bits about visiting a farm is it gets the whole family up, out and doing something with a healthy dose of fresh air thrown in too.

It’s a way of getting away from the hustle and bustle of the towns and shopping centres and just taking a breath as a person – but as a family too! A shared experience among nature is a great way to reconnect.

Of course the great thing about a farm is that you’re not out in the middle of nowhere (broadly speaking) so if you need to go via the shops on your way home it’s not a colossal detour (especially if you’re in the area on holiday).

Until then though, it’s just you, fields, animals and woodland. For grownups it’s a nice change of pace, for children it’s liberating. They are free to run and play in a safe child friendly space, look at animals, or play.

The tranquility of our Woodland Walk is stunning and the wildlife, (dragonflies, kingfishers and much more), is really grounding in our fast busy lives. Imagine gazing up at the blue sky through a canopy of trees or looking down into shady pools in the river, spotting fish or playing pooh-sticks.

You can relax knowing children are safe and having a whale of a time.

Little boy in bobble hat sat on wooden snail sculpture at Farmer Palmer's

Education

A day a the farm is an opportunity for children to learn all about farming, how much work and planning goes into running a farm and how important farms are to our everyday lives.

It’s an opportunity to teach children about where the wool in their jumpers comes from or even the milk on their cereal.

The great thing about a farm is you can help children understand the important compromise we make with nature to meet our need for sustenance with it’s long term sustainability.

For older children a day spent on the farm is living, breathing proof that hard work pays off. The signs are everywhere; from the growing animals to the thriving fields.

The various sessions held at farms like ours are also great to teach children about the different breeds of animals and the environments in which they thrive.

There’s no shortage of things to learn at a farm!

School Group Visit at Farmer Palmer's Farm Park Education and Fun

Interactivity

We believe that children should have the opportunity to interact with the animals as much as possible which is why we hold regular feeding sessions and contact time with the animals.

Most other farms share this view and working farms actively encourage you to help in the day to day running of the farm. It’s great for families who – literally – like to get their hands dirty.

Therapy farms provide support for individuals with learning disabilities or enduring mental health issues, giving them and their families a safe space where they can be with nature in a supported capacity.

The work these farms do is so important as it provides individuals with challenges opportunities to grow crops and interact with animals that perhaps wouldn’t normally be available.

Some farms – like ours – also provide some ‘non-animally’ stuff like big slides, softplay and pedal go karts because we want everyone to have as much fun as possible during their day with us.

Whatever your child’s preference, there is lots to do and lots to see.

Children meeting guinea pigs with Animal Barn team at Farmer Palmer's

The Environment

Not to sound too much like The Lion King but we are all part of a delicate balance and maintaining that balance is pretty vital to our survival.

Children have the opportunity to learn that the lives and welfare of animals matter and how it’s our responsibility to care for the animals and the environment.

Especially if we want sustainable food and warm clothing.

But there’s more to it than that. Understanding the importance of using organic fertilisers, over chemicals, not only produces higher yields but nourishes the soil too –  rather than slowly destroying it.

Free range farming – although this requires more space – yields a better quality meat than battery farming. Not to mention the obvious benefits of animal welfare.

Togetherness

The upshot of all this fun is it gives you all precious time as a family and to share in the experience together.

Being among nature, feeding animals and climbing hay bale mountains is perfect family bonding time and that’s too good to miss.

You can also be part of your child’s learning – which they’ll love – as you go round and meet the animals and the team of experts who staff the farm.

What better way to help your child learn about nature and the importance of farming than while you’re feeding a lamb?

Or how much fun tractors can be while you’re bouncing around in a trailer being towed behind one!

Bumpy Tractor Trailer Ride at Farmer Palmer's Farm Park Dorset

We’re really proud of our small part of the countryside and all it has to offer and there’s nothing we like more than welcoming families like yours to share it. To find out about the events we have on click here. Alternatively check out our opening times and admission prices.