Wednesday, 28 June 2017

BUG HOTEL BUILDING

We have been working hard in our outdoor learning area. There are several jobs that need to be done this year and one was rebuilding the bug hotel. Local people have been kindly donating items over the past month and this week's Forest School session included the rebuild.

The children from as young as 24 months up to 5 years old worked together to build each layer up. Collecting items from the tarp and carrying them over to the bug hotel. Piecing them together so that each layer was well stacked. We discussed what might move in and how different items would appeal to different creatures. Such as bamboo for solitary bees to live in. While we moved things we found lots of different insects that were rehoused. .. not sure if they  wanted to but they were!

The strength shown and careful, safe lifting of heavier items can sometimes be removed from children's activities due to worries about the risk of dropping something or getting hurt. But children understand that heavy things need to be handled carefully and should be given the chance to manage the risk. With careful adult supervision. Even the 30 month olds judged which items they could manage for themselves. Testing the weight before trying to carry it further.

Within 2 hours the children had created a fantastic place for our bugs to live! Recycling items that would have ended up in landfill!

Monday, 19 June 2017

SUNDAY SUN AND RIVER TIME FUN

The weather has just been amazing the past week. Fathers day was a scorcher and my man asked if we could spend the evening by the river. There is a pub a few villages over with a lovely river in the garden where the children like to play. It is shallow and fast running so great fun. The bonus is that there are fish and cray fish to try and catch.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

NEW STICKBREAD STICKS FOR FOREST SCHOOL

The sessions are now back on for our Forest school and one of the first jobs of the day was to decorate the handles of our new Stickbread sticks. We have lengths of willow that have been coppiced and and one end has been slightly tapered. This is where the bread dough gets wrapped. The other end then gets decorated with yarn to make a handle for the children to hold while they cook their bread over the campfire.



Even the very little ones gave it a go. We did help tighten it up a bit but he picked his colours and did the winding!


The sticks look really lovely together and nice a bright once finished.
It also helps the children to distinguish what is a stick to play with and what is a tool for our group.




You can use this technique to make decorations for the garden. Use shorter lengths and wrap them in yarn, then hang the sticks from a tree for a lovely rainbow craft!


SURVIVING THE HEAT WAVE!

Wow! The heatwave has been strong! Just keeping the children cool has been a daily struggle. Forest school this week was without a fire pit. We felt that water play was far better for this weather and a very kind visitor to our group bought ice lollies for everyone. We hung tarps up from trees to create some shade and kept filling bowls of water for the children to play in.



Our forest school leader used yarn and sticks to make a giant bubble wand and mixed a bowl of bubble mix. The children had a great time chasing and popping the bubbles!


Some of us found our own way of cooling off. This very quickly led to more children finding pots to sit in!


I had a little thought. If we used some of the tires and a large tarp we could make little paddling pools for everyone to sit in! It was a huge hit! I can not add pictures of everyone enjoying it sadly as the children all stripped down to their pants and jumped in and that is not really appropriate for the internet!


I set up the pool at home so that all the after schooler's could cool down too! As you can see it was the only place anyone wanted to be!!


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