Primary pupils’ maths lesson which needed wellies and safety helmets

Pupils from Marton cum Grafton Primary School enjoyed a maths lesson with a difference after they were offered the chance to put their knowledge to the test on a building site.

A group of 15 year six children was invited for a tour of a new housing site called Yew Tree Farm, by developer Brierley Homes and Yorkshire based construction firm Hobson and Porter.

The site will comprise a mixture of 2, 3, 4 and 5 bed homes, with a number of new build homes being created alongside the conversion of three redundant barns.  As well as this, almost an acre of public open space will be provided as an amenity space for local residents.

The visit was a complete learning experience for the youngsters, who had a preparatory classroom session to understand the need for accurate mathematics in the construction industry.

That was followed up by a lesson on site – conducted in wellies and hard hats – to see how the mathematics they learned in the classroom is employed in the world of work.

Pupils returned to school feeling they had learned important lessons and the professionals who made the visit happen were also pleased with the opportunity to explain more about the building trade to the next generation.

Brierley Homes Director Matt O’Neill said: “Today’s children are the next generation of engineers, surveyors, planners, bricklayers and skilled trades, it is always a positive when we can do something like this.

“Seeing the work they’ve learned in the classroom in action is a great way to underline the importance of their school work in an enjoyable way.”

Hobson and Porter Site Manager Lewis Toynton said: “We are proud of the quality of the homes we are creating at Yew Tree Farm and hopefully what these children saw may inspire some of them to consider a career in the construction sector. The sector continues to experience significant skills shortages and we continuously look for opportunities to engage pupils of all ages via our Foundations programme to ensure our industry has a sustainable future.”

Yew Tree Farm will provide a valuable addition to the county’s housing stock, mixing high-quality private homes, with affordable units, including some for shared ownership.

The development also features state-of-the-art environmental credentials, including air source heat pumps, which produce less carbon dioxide than conventional gas boilers.

Marton cum Grafton Primary School head teacher Marie-Louise Thirlaway said: “There is no doubt this visit helped to bring teaching to life for our pupils and it was both a memorable day and a valuable contribution to their learning.”

North Yorkshire County Councillor Robert Windass, who represents the area, said: “It is fantastic to see youngsters applying their classroom studies out in our communities. That really helps them understand the importance of learning.

“What makes this visit all the more satisfying is that children were seeing construction of new homes which use low carbon technology. That is important now and will become increasingly so for their generation.”

The youngsters will be returning in the spring, when work on the site is more advanced, to bury a time capsule for future generations to uncover.

To find out more about Brierley Homes, visit and follow them on Linkedin.