Professor Jamie Woodward presents on 'Wonders of The Ice Age’

Professor Jamie Woodward, Head of Geography in the School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED), gave the annual Bexwyke Lecture at Manchester Grammar School to Year 4 and 5 pupils from ten schools across Manchester. More than 400 children attended the day.

Pupils had been working on a range of Ice Age topics leading up to the lecture, and also took part in a series of workshops on the day. Jamie’s research explores landscape change over thousands of years and considers how humans have coped with changing environments, making him the ideal choice for presenting to the pupils on the topic.

Before Jamie’s lecture, the pupils were invited to compete in a prize-winning challenge to write a poem inspired by the Ice Age, whether it be about the Ice Age itself, or simply inspired by the theme of ice and snow. Jamie had the tough task of judging the entries, and he presented a prize to the winner at the end of his lecture.

Jamie said: "These outreach events are not just a key part of the Department of Geography delivering on the University’s social responsibility agenda, they are enormous fun. They are an excellent way of building links with local primary schools and, hopefully, inspiring their students.

"We should certainly move away from the idea that getting children thinking about university and university research need only focus on secondary schools.

"I enjoyed judging the poetry competition and I was extremely impressed with the quality of the questions at the end of my talk. These really kept me on my toes and they kept coming with such enthusiasm. One Year 5 pupil asked, 'how do we date Ice Age art?' Another asked 'how do we know the colour of a woolly mammoth?' Both brilliant questions with far from straightforward answers!"

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