It's no secret that children love meeting new furry friends.
While many farms that normally allow visits are currently closed due to lockdown, it doesn't mean that children can't virtually hang out with their favourite farm animals! We have put together a list of farm resources that are bound to keep kids busy all day while making sure they get lots of face time with their favourite animal pals.
Getting involved with small farms during this time is a great way to help support them, keep up to date with their news, and of course give the children their daily dose of animal fun!
Kentish Town City Farm
From learning the life cycle of frogs, to bedtime story videos with real baby chicks, Kentish Town City Farm has a whole schedule of educational online activities to keep children entertained during lockdown.
For regular updates, bedtime stories and educational lessons, check out the Kentish Town City Farm Youtube page. There are lots of great resources for children, and of course, who doesn't like hanging out with baby animals at bedtime?
Their Facebook page is a fantastic resource for updates on daily farm life, as well as opportunities for learning and interacting with the animals and workers at the farm.
On their Facebook page, Folly Farm Adventure Park & Zoo in Pembrokeshire are sharing video footage of all their animals, including baby lambs! You can also check out more interactive animal online sessions here. There are daily updates on how all the animals on the farm are getting on during lockdown, and you can even sign up to adopt a pig online!
Stepney City Farm
Stepney City Farm in Tower Hamlets has taken to Instagram Live every weekend to allow you to meet the animals! Keep up to date with their Instagram here, for pictures of the animals and much more. Their Twitter page also has lots of fascinating animal updates, where kids can get familiar with all the animals that live on the farm. For a fun home activity, why not take this post as an example, and create 'profiles' for different animals? Kids can name each animal's name, favourite food and superpower, and draw a picture for each one.
Spitalfields City Farm
You can keep up with everything that's going on at Spitalfields City Farm on their blog. Children will have a great time learning how to make their very own newspaper plant pots- this fun craft can be made easily using recycled materials at home. You could even take it one step further and plant your own herb garden!
Hackney City Farm
Hackney City farm has an entire educational section of their website dedicated to in-depth information about all the animals on the farm. This is a great way to help kids learn about all different types of animals and their day to day life on the farm. Why not make some easy activities for the kids based on this information? Some fun ideas are:
Animal Quiz: Create a simple quiz and get the kids to use the online resource to collect information about all the different animals.
Creative Writing Project: There are three geese on the farm named Abigail, Dorothy, and Gabe. Ask the kids to write a paragraph about what they could get up to on a sunny day.
True or False Game: There are lots of fun facts about different animals on the website. Why not test your child's knowledge by seeing if they think the facts are true or false, before revealing the answer!
Deen City Farm
On their Facebook page, Deen City Farm has lots of fun educational videos where kids can get the opportunity to meet all the different animals that live on the farm! From rabbits and guinea pigs, to donkeys and goats, there is something for everyone. You can even sign up to join their virtual Pony Club, which is currently being taught through online videos.
Surrey Docks Farm
Unlike a lot of other farms, Surrey Docks also keeps bees in addition to all it's other animal residents! You can read all about their work online, and the ins and outs of how beekeeping works. With World Bee Day coming around on 20th May, why not expand this activity with some adorable bee crafts? These ideas use household items and simple crafts to create wonderful buzzy pals that children will love.
Children will have a whale of a time filling out these activity sheets put together by Oasis Farm in Waterloo. Learn how to re-sprout spring onions, make a lockdown zen garden, and even play bug bingo! These activities are a great way to help children think about the ways they can use recycled materials to grow things, and get to grips with the basics of gardening.
Odds Farm Park
As well as having the opportunity to meet many of the farm's residents in video form, Odds Farm Park has also provided stacks of learning resource materials and activities for primary school children. Some of these resources centre around a visit to the farm, but are easy to adapt when viewing the virtual videos of the animals. There are lots of 'pointers for teachers' with facts about everything on the farm, so this is a great opportunity for a mini homeschool lesson on animal life.
Smithills Open Farm
You can learn all about each of the dozens of species of animal at Smithills Open Farm through the animated section of their website. This resource is so detailed and full of information, your child can easily spend a couple of hours (or as long as their attention span allows!) poring through all the videos, animations and info! A great way to expand this activity is to search for whatever animal you like, and create a mini-project around that animal. Activities might include creating an animal diary, profile, and maybe even a story about that animal's life.
Top Tip: Check out the weird and wonderful animal section to find out all about animals you might not expect to find on a farm!
Highland Wildlife Park
Ever wanted to know what a snow monkey gets up to every day? Highland Wildlife Park has a fantastic Snow Monkey Cam on their website, where you can tune in to watch what our primate friends are getting up to! You can also keep updated on all the news to do with the park, and even help animals in need by donating.
Sarah was born and raised in the North West. Her love of art and culture brought her to study in London and she never left! She can be found teaching painting classes, trying out new recipes, or drawing with a cup of tea.