KS4 Biology: Kew's Millennium Seed Bank

Students visit the renowned Millennium Seed Bank to discover its vital role in the worldwide conservation of plant biodiversity.

Millennium Seed Bank at Wakehurst

Level

Key Stage 4

Duration

2 hours

Allocated space

20 students per group

Overview

Students visit Kew's Millennium Seed Bank, the largest wild plant seed bank in the world. They will learn about the importance of biodiversity, how human activities are resulting in loss of biodiversity and how the seed bank is working to conserve wild plant species.

Students will have an introductory talk on the work of the seed bank, explore the displays in the public gallery and see scientists at work in the laboratories.

Work on plant adaptations can be integrated into this session.

Learning outcomes

School visits at Wakehurst support and enhance the curriculum offered in schools and colleges. We aim to give students opportunities that are difficult or impossible to create in the school or college environment. We design our sessions to match the learning outcomes in the National Curriculum and GCSE specifications.

Students will have the opportunity to:

  • Understand the importance of biodiversity for a sustainable future for humans.
  • Consider the positive and negative effects humans have on ecosystems.
  • Explore the seed bank gallery and see scientists at work in the laboratories.
  • Identify the adaptations of plants for different environmental conditions.
  • Consider further studies and a possible career in science.

Curriculum links 

KS4 National Curriculum

  • The importance of biodiversity.
  • Positive and negative human interactions with ecosystems.

Links to GCSE specification

  • OCR Gateway Science Biology A B5.2 Natural selection and evolution.
  • OCR Twenty First Century Science Suite - Biology B Chapter B6: Life on Earth – past, present and future.
  • Edexcel Topic 9 – Ecosystems and material cycles.
  • AQA 4.7 Ecology.
A wide shot of the winter garden

Key Stage 4 sessions

Engaging and hands-on curriculum-linked activities taught by experienced and enthusiastic Kew teachers.

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