Seashore walk

A beach walk from Stubbington Study Centre to Titchfield Haven with various stops on the way for discussion

Learning outcome

To gain an awareness and understanding of the geography of the local coastal area.

  • For Key Stage 2
  • Offsite – seashore
  • Duration 2 – 2 ½ hours
Success criteria
  • I can tell you where we are located
  • I can explain some coastal features and processes
  • I can tell you about some of the marine and coastal wildlife found in this area
Session plan

The number and order of stops on the walk will vary with time available, the speed that the group walk and tides. Possible stops are listed below:

  • Saltern’s Park - this first stop helps the children to orientate themselves by discussing what they can see and in which direction. Local landmarks are identified e.g. Fawley Power Station. They also look for clues which indicate why people might visit the area
  • Searching the shingle – children find evidence of marine life past and present. The examples found are then used to facilitate discussion on identification, adaptations and fossilisation
  • Victorian changing rooms - children use paired discussion to try to work out what these mystery buildings are. On clear days, Osborne House can be seen across The Solent
  • Weather vane and groynes – at this stop, a weather vane is used to determine wind direction. This is followed by a discussion about long shore drift and the use of groynes to counteract its affect
  • Badger sett – Located between the beach huts, a badger sett entrance can provide the opportunity for children to think about what evidence of animal activity there might be nearby
  • Mouth of River Meon – at this stop there is usually the opportunity to observe and identify some of the local birds and their adaptations. The function and importance of the sluice  gates is also discussed
  • If the walk has started very promptly, there may be time to stop at a location beyond the mouth of the Meon river with views across Titchfield Haven and to the Spinniker Tower in Portsmouth
  • Hawthorn tree – time permitting, the route back to the centre can include a stop at a hawthorn tree which has grown at an angle, away from the sea, as a result of the high salt content in the wind

On the way back to the centre, children will be asked to deposit what they have collected back onto the beach. If allowed by visiting staff, they may take one item each back to the classroom.

Less able children

Vocabulary will be adapted by Stubbington member of staff to suit the age of the children.

Prior activities in school

  • Use maps (e.g. Google maps/Google Earth) to locate Stubbington Study Centre and some of the places around it
  • The walk could link to coastal or river topics back at school

Follow up activities

  • Use the shells found on the beach to produce your own branching identification keys
  • Sketching shells or fossils collected
Health and safety checks
  • Inhalers and epipens to be taken on the walk
  • Appropriate clothing should be worn (no wellies or sandals)
  • Stubbington member of staff will carry a throw bag and first aid kit at the front of the line. Members of school staff will also be asked to carry a throw bag (at the end of the line) as well as extra first aid kits
  • Children must always walk between the two throw bags
  • Children must not eat or put hands near faces. Hands to be washed immediately on return
  • Children must not throw stones
  • Children should be accompanied by a member of school staff when using public toilets
  • Regular head counts to be taken
  • There must be an adult to child ratio of 1:12 for all offsite visits