Year 2 Trip to The Living Rainforest
What a fabulous day Year 2 had at the Living Rainforest!
The children had already learnt what rainforests were like and where they were, so we all wondered how this could be recreated in Hampstead Norreys. As we entered the rainforest, we were amazed at the incredible plants surrounding us, the enormous leaves and dense vegetation. We needed to adjust our clothing as it was very warm and humid. Our guide started off by showing us a globe and explaining where the rainforests are. William Y told the class that he was born in Singapore, which our guide had told us was a rainforest. He remembered that it was very hot.
Our guide knew that we were thinking about amazing adaptations and so we focused mostly on the animals. We started off looking at the snakes, the children were asked where they thought the Emerald Tree Boa would live, Tom LH told us that it would live in the leaves of the trees because it would be camouflaged. Next, we moved onto the tarantula. After telling the class that he loved tarantulas, Johnny RK explained that they are ambush predators which means they are an animal that hides somewhere they might be camouflaged and when their pray comes past they jump out and catch it. The guide told us that when it is scared the tarantula shakes so its hair comes off and they act as splinters hurting their predator. She showed us a picture of what had happened to someone’s eye who had got a bit too close!
We moved onto the poison dart frogs, which were definitely a highlight. Johnny knew that the frogs were such a bright blue colour to warn predators that they are poisonous. We learnt that this is the opposite of camouflage and is called aposematic.
We saw lots of different birds, but a definite favourite was Edwin the toucan. He was so friendly that during Covid, when the rainforest was shut, he became very sad. The staff had to put a screen in front of his aviary which showed children passing and talking to keep him company. Hermione B spotted the red spot on Edwin’s bottom and knew that this was to make predators think that he was dangerous and to leave him alone.
At the start of the trip, we were told that there was a sloth in the rainforest. She was called Cinnamon but was very elusive and had never been spotted on previous Elstree trips. We were all so excited when William spotted her as we were getting ready to leave – what a treat!
We all had an amazing day, our rainforest topic was really brought to life.