Your stories: ‘back garden biology’

Dr Turnbull invites you to join her for a new topic every week; from the different types of bumblebees to the tricks plants use to survive, you’re sure to learn something new!

‘I decided to make a new series of videos about biology from my back garden when the lockdown started. I’m a biology tutor and I love discussing biological topics with my students. Most of them are really passionate about the subject and giving tutorials is probably the best part of my week. When I realised that the students wouldn’t be returning to Oxford, I thought the videos might replace the parts of the tutorial where I bring things in to show them, which would be much harder once we were doing tutorials remotely.

Four images of Dr Lindsay Turnbull talking her garden and home

Dr Lindsay Turnbull in her garden

‘I ordered a camera, mic and tripod and picked them up just before the lockdown began. I had never made videos before, but thought it would be a good time to learn something new. I had great support from Peter Robinson, Head of Educational Media, who encouraged me and agreed to host the series on the Oxford podcasts site.

‘I’ve had lots of positive feedback from people, including current and former students and staff both here and at the University of Zurich, where I used to work. My uncle and my dad started to film things in their back gardens and now a few others have started to send me photographs and videos, which is great. I intend to keep making one per week until the end of Trinity Term, and possibly beyond if there are still new things to find in the garden. The skills I’ve learned have been really useful and over the last two weeks, I’ve been preparing material to replace our residential fieldcourse that should have run later this term with the first-years. I’ve just turned 50 (while ill with coronavirus during the lockdown) but it just goes to show that you can always learn something new!’

Keep up to date with the series on the Queen’s College YouTube Channel.

Do you have a story to share about how you or your team is adapting to deal with the extraordinary situation we are all facing? If so, please forward the details over to