Topic based learning – Rainforests

Wondering how we study in an interconnected way? 

The Rainforest topic was chosen and studied by our 7 to 10 year old group during the Autumn term 2019. Below you will find an overview of what we covered. 

Topic – Rainforests KS2


• What and where are rainforests? Locating on a map, features of the rainforests, layers of the rainforests
• Trees and plants – identifying trees and plants found in the rainforest
• Celtic rainforests – identifying features and locating on a map
• Culture and people – tribes of the rainforests. The Tembe Tribe
• Deforestation – Where and why deforestation occurs and the Palm Oil industry
• Fairtrade – what is Fairtrade? Why is it important? Trip to buy Fairtrade ingredients
• Rainforest animals and creatures – rainforest as a habitat, endangered animals
• Animal adaptation – how animals and creatures adapt to survive in the rainforests
• Plant adaptation – how plants and trees adapt to survive in the rainforests
• Compare and contrast with Nutclough Woods – similar and different features
• Rainforests in the news – researching the current issues

Creative Arts 

• Tribal symbols and body markings
• Layers of the Rainforest constructions
• Choreographing a rainforest dance
• Listening to sounds of the rainforest
• Constructing human and animal habitats in the Woods
• Making a rainstick
• Creating a layers of the rainforest display
• Leaf printing with Paint
• Making rafia and leaf skirts and headdresses
• Tribal face and body paint
• Drawing and painting a tropical flower and leaf display
• Making and designing a chocolate box from a net
• Designing and making rainforest imaginary creature puppets and performing a puppet show
• Using watercolours to paint a rainforest animal


• Identifying trees from leaves using a leaf iDial
• Making a terrarium
• Charcoal and watercolour leaf pictures
• Making and using natural paint brushes and paint from resources found in the Woods
• Making tribal masks and headdresses
• Creating tribal ‘bone’ jewellery from salt dough
• Building a small creature habitat that can withstand rain and wind
• Building a small fire and maintain it (in the rain) long enough to toast marshmallows
• Making a windchime from sticks
• Making Fairtrade chocolate and peanut butter treats (to go in boxes made on Monday)
• Camouflage hide and seek
• Features of Nutclough Woods clue Hunt
• Making festive decorations


• Greetings
• Introductions
• Numbers
• Nature Vocabulary
• My house and bedroom
• Basic verbs of movement
• Imperatives
• Spanish Christmas


Number –
• Column addition and subtraction
• Addition and subtraction word problems
• Times tables


• Newtonian and non-Newtonian liquids (Rainforest mud slime)
• Layers of the Rainforest – climate
• Habitats
• The Water Cycle – rain clouds in a jar
• Properties of materials – rainforest weapons and huts
• Tribal markings – making pastes
• Properties of soil
• Chocolate production – reversibility/irreversibility
• Deforestation and eco-systems – comparative study – Amazon Rainforest vs Nutclough Woods

Literacy Overview: 
Writing –  SPAG (Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar)
  • Spelling practice
  • Understanding and using punctuation
  • Understanding and using there/their/they’re

Non-fiction report writing

• Informative writing based on the rainforests including an information report and planning a newspaper report.

• Writing a Limerick
• Writing a Haiku

Creative Writing
• Free writing in chosen genre and topic


• Excerpts taken from ‘Children of the Rainforest’
• Information texts – comprehensions: Tribes of the Rainforest, Deforestation, The Production of Chocolate.
• Learning to infer and evaluate from text.
• Highlighting key words and phrases.
• Observing the linguistic features and the structural choices of the writer/text.

Drama & Oral Language 

• Dramatising science lessons e.g. Newtonian and non-Newtonian substances embodied, creating the layers of the rainforest in levels using their bodies.