Our Week in the Forest...
This week in the forest the children have shown great resilience and perseverance as they battled through stormy weather, set their own challenges and games, and tested the limits of where they could take their own projects. It is incredible to see how independent and free thinking all of the children are.
At Rocks Lane, the children spotted a wonderful array of mini-beasts during our walk into camp. The wild bank is now full of; nettles, cow parsley, sticky willow, blue alkanet which have created a rich and diverse habitat for the children to study closely. On the warm sunny days, the children spotted; spiders, ladybirds, butterflies, aphids, iridescent beetles, and lots of shield bugs. Then when the rain came the slugs, snails and worms came out in force. The children were so fascinated that they got incredibly close up to study them in detail. One group found a snail that was very busy munching on some leaves. They were looking so closely they could actually see the snails mouth opening and closing around the edge of the leaf and then ripping a piece off!
The children have also had great fun playing with water and experimenting with the way that different materials behaved when mixed with it. They discussed how some materials turn the water a different colour and others don’t mix in! This activity was extended during Jaybird sessions which Morwenna led with large groups of children.
At Putney Heath, the children enjoyed Mar's new forest school skittles that she made at home. The children had to balance some small logs upright to make a pyramid of skittles. Then they stood behind the shooting platform and through throwing the stick trying to knock as many skittles as possible down. Whilst enjoying the physical aspect of the activity and developing their hand eye coordination and ability to aim, the children also engaged in lots of mathematical discussions. They talked about how many skittles they had knocked over, compared amounts with each other and even recorded these numbers in the mud as numerals or a tally. The children also discussed how far they were throwing from and compared the length of the skittle pitch. This spurred the children on to set their own challenges adapting the distance to suit their needs. Some children were happy to throw from close up making sure that they could knock some skittles over and challenged themselves to try and get as many down as possible. Others made their skittle pitch longer and longer trying to set their own goal of hitting the skittles from a great distance!
On a particularly rainy day the children took no notice at all and proceeded to make their very own train tracks that weaved in and out of the trees through the woods. The children went off and collected hundreds of fallen sticks and worked as a team to lay the sticks out to form a track. After some perseverance, the children managed to complete a long loop of about fifty meters and immediately they all became trains and started to run around the tracks!
Throughout the week the children have been writing special messages and drawing special pictures in a notebook for Dipa. We have discussed with them that Dipa is very sadly leaving the forest and there have been some lovely messages written and scribed. We will all miss Dipa very much in the forest but we wish her all the best with her future.
We hope you all have a wonderful weekend and we cannot wait to see what next week brings!
Little Forest Folk