Our Week in the Forest...
We started the week off with a nice cosy fire to keep us warm. The children toasted marshmallows on long sticks, ate their snack and enjoyed a warm cup of apple juice. Once the children had finished eating, they went off to play. Quickly, many children gathered in a den and began to replicate the fire experience they had just had. They collected sticks and gathered them in a pile in the middle. Then, long sticks were collected along with leaves. The children stuck the leaves on the end of the sticks pretending that they were marshmallows. Some children found a stone and a stick and proceeded to use them as the fire starter, scraping off ‘sparks’ to get the fire going! The children then sat round in a circle cooking marshmallows and having quiet conversations.
Dance has been a big feature this week! The children have explored different ways of moving from slow ballet moves to fast modern expressions. The children have been learning to keep a rhythm and move in time to music from a guitar and drum beat. The children showed creativity as they came up with their own moves and twists. It was also a great way to keep warm and before morning snack we often had a game of musical statues!
The weather seemed to become more and more wintery as the week went on with some very heavy frosts and eventually some slushy snow to play in. The children have shown a very keen interest in learning all about the science behind water freezing. We discussed how on the walk out to basecamp the ground was hard and frozen and there were sparkling ice crystals adorning all of the foliage around us. It was then noted on the way back that the ground had become soft and wet, and the ice crystals had vanished. The children concluded that there must be water in the ground that froze to make it go hard and that later on throughout the day it got warmer, so the ice melted. One morning, when the children also came across some puddles that were frozen solid, they decided to experiment with the effectiveness of different sticks by smashing holes in the ice. The children tested stick after stick until they found one that was more effective. Different conclusions were made depending on the sticks used. Some found out that heavier sticks worked better than lighter sticks, some found out that thinner sticks worked better than thicker ones and others found out that the harder the stick, the better it was.
A wonderful interest in making stories has sparked up this week! Morwenna has started teaching the children how to make their own books in different ways. They have been binding with elastic bands and sticks which required great patience and a lot of fine motor dexterity. Then they learnt how to bind a book using thread and a hole punch. The children carefully spaced out the holes before gently pushing some wool thread through to hold the pages together. Once their books were made, the children then thought of their own stories to put in them. We had a wonderful array of characters, plot lines with children choosing to draw their own pictures and educators either scribing or supporting children to write their own sentences down.
Little Forest Folk