PRIOR Park Prep School in Cricklade is now housing ten chicks as part of the outdoor education curriculum.

The chickens, brought to the school earlier this month, are one of two breeds; lavender pekin bantams and mille fleur pekin bantams.

More eggs have been put in the incubator with the hope of adding two chicks to the family and a chicken coop has been built on site for the growing group of hens.

Headmaster Mark Pearce said: “From the very first day the eggs were delivered there was a buzz of excitement and anticipation. Each morning when the children arrived they would immediately pop in to see how things were going.”

Once the hens start laying the eggs will be used by the school’s catering department, with each chicken hopefully producing five small eggs each per week.

Mr Pearce said that the purpose of the project was to develop a sense of ownership and responsibility, to give an understanding of where food comes from and to demonstrate the physical development of life.

“The children will take it in turns to collect the eggs and to help out Year 3 pupil Jacob Wickham said a competition had been held to name the chickens, with all children being invited to decorate an egg box. Twelve lucky winners will be selected to name the hens.”

No finalists have been selected yet but potential names for the school’s egg layers include Sunshine, Fudge and Chirpy.