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Education

Hens resources

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free range chickens in a field

RESOURCES ON HENS

Here we have a great selection of films for students of all ages and a Power Point for primary pupils. These will help students to gain an understanding of hens’ behaviour and the different ways that we farm chickens and hens.

Primary Age Resources

Power Point

Let’s discuss: natural behaviours of hens and how we farm them Our Power Point Presentation is easy to use and considers the natural behaviours of hens, and the way that we farm them. It is aimed at children aged 7-11 (KS2) but can be adapted for younger ones. The Power Point is designed to be interactive. Questions keep coming up – stop to discuss these before you get the answers! You might think of other things you would also like to discuss.

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Power Point
Film: Positive Behaviour In Hens

Film: Positive Behaviour In Hens

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Positive behaviour in hens. 1 min 31 sec

Watch these free-range hens enjoying their life on the farm. See how much space they have to display their natural behaviours and roam around.

Some questions to consider while watching:

  • Can you make a list of the different behaviours you see?
  • Do you think it is important for hens to be able to display these behaviours?
  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of free-range farming.
  • Are you surprised by anything you see?
Film: Mission Impossible Hen

Film: Mission Impossible Hen

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Watch this determined hen negotiate an obstacle course so she can reach her nest

Hens have strong instincts to make a nest. Watch this clever hen navigate her way through an obstacle course to find a safe place to lay her egg. Nothing will get in her way!

Footage copyright Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (ASAB) from their film Stimulus Response.

Some questions to consider while watching:

  • Why is the hen so determined to find the nest?
  • What did she do when she got there?
  • What does this show us?
  • How important is it for hens to have access to nesting material?
  • This hen was filmed at the end of the last century. She had lived before in a barren cage which didn’t have a nest. How do you feel about that?
  • Barren cages without nesting areas are now banned in Britain and the EU, but many hens are still kept in cages. How do you feel about this?
Film: Lets Ask The Animals

Film: Lets Ask The Animals

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Lets ask the animals. 22 min
A classic from the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour

Discover hens learning from watching television, a pig keeping a “nose” on her offspring and sheep who know that one vehicle sounds different from another. 

Some questions to consider while watching:

  • Is there anything that surprises you about farm animals’ intelligence?
  • Should this affect how we treat farm animals? Do you think it is fair to keep animals in cages? Should people pay more for their food so that animals can have more freedom?
  • How are the animals similar to humans? How are they different?
  • Can you think of any other ways that we could test farm animals’ intelligence?

Older students – secondary and college

Two of our general films about the welfare of farm animals, including hens and chickens, and a practical activity to show the impact of selective breeding for fast growth in chickens on muscle degeneration.

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