Our Week in the Forest...
This week in the forest we took a stroll all the way back to the fifteenth century. The children have loved making bows and arrows before firing them and seeing just how close to the targets they could get. Lots of what we teach in the forest is about risk assessment, and the children being able to do this themselves; whether that be understanding how high it’s safe to climb, how we use tools without having accidents or how to use bows and arrows safely. We drew circles with numbers in them and the children did their best to tally up their score.
Very little of this activity was actually about hitting the target; the children loved scavenging for a stick to use for their bow – one that bent a little but not too much. Then attempting to tie the elastic to either end before finding the perfect arrow. It took a lot of practise and was a real challenge trying to make the arrow fly, but as the children tried and tried again, some of them really began to get the hang of it, and their excitement was tangible each time the arrow sored (usually past) the target!
We have had lots of blackberries at both Paradise and the Windmill and the children have been fascinated by these. One of our forest rules is ‘no picking, no licking’ but when it comes to blackberries, this is an area we often feel conflicted. We want our children to grow up knowing how to be sustainable, caring not only for themselves but for the world around them.
What we often end up saying is when the children are out with their families, their parents can decide if they’re allowed to pick them but at forest school we don’t. This is because although our 4 year olds can distinguish the differences between blackberries and holly berries, for our 2 year olds, they’re both equally juicy looking. This doesn’t mean we can’t still make use of the blackberries though. Before the children arrived on camp, we picked a few to mash up and use as paint. The children loved using this natural die to paint on paper, logs and their hands!
Along with looking for bugs, playing lots of hide and seek and getting absolutely, completely, utterly soaked on Wednesday (but loving every minute of it) we’ve had the best fun this week! We hope you all have a lovely weekend!
Little Forest Folk