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School pupils discover the effects of climate change

Penllwyn Primary School, Caerphilly rewarded for their investigative approach

Daffodils appearing before crocuses and flowers blooming three weeks earlier than usual are just some of the findings collated by 100 schools across Wales who undertook Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales' Spring Bulbs investigation this year.

3,743 pupils from across the country have been monitoring the effects of the temperature on crocus and daffodil bulbs since October 2008, keeping weather records and noting when their flowers open as part of this long term study.

Penllwyn Primary School from Caerphilly - one of the most committed schools to this project was chosen to visit the Really Welsh Daffodil Farm and Kenfig Nature Reserve last month to compare notes!

Really Welsh Farmers also reported their daffodils bloomed later this year probably due to the cold winter which slowed down the flowers' development. Rhiannon Williams said:

"Like with the schools, our daffodils were about three weeks late. This year we tried to promote the Daffodil for Santes Dwynwen and Valentines day instead of the usual roses that are shipped in to this country. But unfortunately our daffs weren't ready for St Dwynwens because of the cold weather."

Pupils from Penllwyn Primary School have enjoyed measuring the difference in the growth of their bulbs each week:

"We have learnt about global warming - that the world is getter hotter because of pollution." Emma Taylor

"I tried encouraging my two cousins to grow flowers - they are both 5 years old." Mair Gardner

"It's more fun learning outside, I also like the team work. I'd rather do all our work outside. The Daffodil is the flower of country so we are proud to do it!" Astrid Hungerford

Teacher Mrs Sian Wright is also a great supporter of this project. She said:

"The children have engaged with this project. They have been out everyday checking them lovingly, talking to them like Prince Charles. They were good at the watering and happy to go out in any weather. It has also helped them develop new skills in data handling."  

Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales' Spring Bulbs project encourages children to adopt their own bulbs to measure climate change. Fictional character Professor Plant then helps pupils analyse their findings online.

Danielle Cowell from the Museum's learning department initiated the project.

"I was delighted to meet the pupils from Penllwyn Primary," said Danielle. "They were clearly inspired by growing their own bulbs and keeping their own scientific records for the museum. Not only did they show a good awareness of global warming but they also had a respect for the nature around us and more importantly a respect for themselves and the work they had done. I know this is true for many of the 100 schools taking part this year and I'd like to thank them all!"

The Museum would like to thank the Really Welsh Trading Company for their support this year, providing daffodil bulbs, certificates and a fantastic daffodil picking trip! And further support is needed in order for the project to continue and expand. If you're interested or would like your school to take part, please do get in touch:

Admission to National Museum Cardiff is free thanks to the support of the Welsh Assembly Government.

Amgueddfa Cymru operates seven national museums across Wales. These are National Museum Cardiff, St Fagans: National History Museum, National Roman Legion Museum, Caerleon, Big Pit: National Coal Museum, Blaenafon, National Wool Museum, Dre-fach Felindre, National Slate Museum, Llanberis and the National Waterfront Museum, Swansea.


For further information, images or interview opportunities, please contact Catrin Mears, Communications Officer, Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales on (029) 2057 3185 or email