School Workshops

The Munching Caterpillars Goes to Town Project Officer is available to visit primary schools in Bristol. We tailor our workshops to fit in with your school day and to visit as many classes as we can. Please see below for some further information about what we do, and get in touch to find out more.

Workshop 1. 

What is a butterfly? What is a moth? What are their secrets and what do they need to survive? In this introductory lesson we look at UK species to answer all these questions and more. We then split the class into two – one half of the class engage in a fun activity, such as our life cycle game, whilst the other half work in pairs outdoors to plant nectar and food plants for butterflies, moths and their caterpillars.

What we provide:

A fun PowerPoint presentation delivered by a DBS-checked expert with plenty of chances for children to ask questions.

Planting with trowels and plants (all provided by ourselves).

We always try and bring a volunteer in addition to our staff member.

Amazing free printed resources for every child.

Caterpillar hunt homework to be handed out ahead of our second visit.

What we need from the school:

An area of your school grounds to be transformed! We try to be as accommodating as possible and appreciate schools are busy places… we aren’t adverse to helping reclaim a desolate area, and in special cases we may even have budget for planters. However, we need to know that well ahead of time. In the best case scenario, an area has been prepared for us and we’re ready to get planting on the day we arrive…

An extra pair of hands or two. Our lesson is one that grown ups are sure to enjoy too, plus when it comes to planting and occupying the children outdoors, it really is all hands on deck!

buttterflies5

Workshop 2.

Visit 2 is all about life cycles and live specimens. We try and bring in moths that we have trapped ethically and locally the previous evening, and will release that night. In class visit 1 a homework was set and we look forward to seeing what specimens have been brought into the classroom! We recap Lesson 1: it’s always amazing to see how much the children now know about butterflies, moths and their caterpillars. We then focus on the life cycle – part of the National Curriculum.

We then split the class into typically four tables (or circles if weather suitable to go outside) which rotate so all children have a chance to see our moths, and – hopefully – some pupa and caterpillars, plus the specimens children have caught. If time we play a great memory game too.

What we provide:

A fun PowerPoint presentation delivered by a DBS-checked expert with chance for children to ask questions.

Live moth specimens (weather permitting the night before), pupa and – depending on our recent catches – caterpillars.

We always try and bring a volunteer in addition to our staff member.

Amazing free resources for every child.

What we need from the school:

We’d love you to encourage the children to see what they can find in their own gardens or local green spaces. Can they find a caterpillar to bring in and show us?

Meet the Team...

Matt Brierley cover photo

Matt Brierley (Bristol's Munching Caterpillar Goes to Town Officer)

Matt Brierley absolutely loves moths and is on a mission to rebrand them! After all, what are moths but the butterflies of the night? Ah, but they eat clothes I hear you say! Only two British moths do - and we have thousands! Matt also freelances as a wildlife filmmaker and has worked on some really exciting BBC programmes. He was in New York for Planet Earth II's ambitious filming of peregrines from a chopper, researched the seabird stories for Blue Planet II and helped manage the live cameras for Springwatch. If Matt looks familiar you may have seen his alter ego performing wildlife or dinosaur themed comedy... and yes... he's even written a moth joke. Did you see that moth in the Sainsburys Bagging Area? I think it was after nectar points. OK. He didn't say it was funny.