School Notes: Week 4 of Winter Lockdown
February 1, 2021

Rydal Penrhos School Notes – Week 4 of Winter Lockdown

In the last year, it has become even more apparent that being outdoors is good for us. Happily, we have the most magnificent and extensive school grounds at Rydal Penrhos and have been able to make full use of those at each point during the pandemic.

Last week there was excitement about the RSPB Bird Count project. We always support this as a school but this year was even more special with pupils at home being able to take their iPads into their own gardens and count the birds they could see.

I have a strong suspicion that this year more birds will be recorded than ever before.

I’m not sure if this is due to more of us being available to do the actually watching and counting, or whether there actually are more birds due to less traffic and human activity or whether our bird counters have simply got a little over-enthusiastic!

I say the final part after witnessing our Pre-Prep keyworker pupils counting birds in our school forest on Friday.

Mrs Pyves tried valiantly in her pre-count talk to emphasise that quietness and patient waiting in one spot were the order of the day. This worked until the first bird was spotted, a lone pigeon, and then 15 pupils rushed towards the pigeon shouting and pointing!

The pigeon picture was duly ticked, but the large scale noise had surprised the rest of the birds into flight and there now followed a chaotic scene of children running around trying to identify birds with their binoculars (very important twitcher equipment!!) and relaying their sightings to their partner with the clipboard.

The pupils seemed to think that they had to have an actual conversation with the bird in order for it to count, I heard the following phrases:

  • ‘How are you Mr. Robin?’
  • ‘Where’s your nest?’
  • ‘Are you a woodpecker?’
  • ‘Bye-bye seagulls’

Nevertheless, the pupils showed great resilience, staying outside in quite chilly weather for the complete hour. Their bird identification skills were admirable and team work couldn’t be faulted.

I’m just not sure quite how accurate the actual bird count information will be. When eight pairs of children all write down that they have seen four robins that would imply a woodland glade swarming with the things…when in fact it was the same robin hopping from bush to bush quietly scanning the ground for worms loosened by the pupils’ wellies rushing past; quite an intelligent bird!

Good luck RSPB sorting out all of the data!

Mrs Lucy Davies

Head of Rydal Penrhos Prep School


Anyone wishing to enquire about Rydal Penrhos School can do so by calling 01492 530155, email admissions@rydalpenrhos.com or register your interest online here: https://rydal.wpengine.com/admissions/apply-now/