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Programmes for Secondary Schools

At Westonbirt we welcome the opportunity to work with secondary schools to develop programmes that suit your needs. 

Some of the curriculum areas we can support are highlighted below, but should you have further queries please contact the education team on 0300 067 4856 or email.

KS3 Programmes

Woodland Planning for Sustainability
Designed to explore the importance of our trees, woodlands and forests for people, wildlife and global ecosystems.  Using the arboretum as a focus, students will gather observations about organisms found at different ecological layers, assess the impact of a range of human activities on the environment and design a sustainable woodland for the future.

Growing Green - Exploring photosynthesis
Designed to explore the process of photosynthesis using the arboretum’s diverse tree collection. Through a range of hands-on discovery activities students will observe a variety of leaf adaptations before considering the role photosynthesis plays in ecosystems and the atmosphere.

People and Place - Tourism
This programme is designed for KS3 students studying tourism and the impacts and interactions between people and place.  It provides a range of activities that enable students to explore the needs of different user groups at the arboretum, how to achieve a balance between those needs and suggestions for how Westonbirt can be managed sustainably.

Forests for the Future - Trees, forests and climate change
This programme explores the global issues of climate change and sustainable development, with a focus on the role trees and forests can play.  The emphasis is on positive action and students will go away feeling they can make a real difference.

Woodland Ecology
This half-day programme is specially designed for KS3 students. It encourages them to investigate the inter-relationships between plants and animals in a woodland ecosystem  – including food chains and webs (energy transfer), and pyramids of numbers and biomass.

Natural Arts
Using the arboretum as inspiration, students explore the contrasts of the natural world through a selection of hands-on activities, and focus their attention on the variety of shapes, textures, patterns, colours and forms to be found in our trees. 

KS4 Programmes


  • Tourism - including balancing needs of our visitors with arobretum management, marketing, customer care, events and publicity
  • Forest management - looking at different management systems such as clear fell, continuous cover and coppice

Applied Science and Environmental Science (GCSE / A-level)

  • Soil science - soil composition, identification, importance to plants and wildlife, and its significance locally and globally
  • Tree and plant adaptation - exploring adaptation to seasonal change, soil, climatic conditions and environmental factors 
  • Horticulture - propagation processes from seed to sapling, tree care and management systems 
  • Conservation in Botanic Gardens - exploring biodiversity and in- situ and ex-situ conservation


Last updated: 8th August 2016


England's Woods and Forests are cared for by Forest Enterprise England, an agency of the Forestry Commission.