Our Week in the Forest...
In the small hours of an autumnal morning, some rain must have visited the forest, leaving behind clues of its presence in the form of puddles. These intrigued a group of children as they walked into the forest. They gathered around them, bent over their mirrored surfaces to study reflections of themselves and the sky and tentatively disturbed the images with their fingers. It didn’t take long before the children wanted to jump and splash in them – sending droplets of water flying into the air way past their heads, laughing gleefully the whole time. It was exhilarating to watch how new children are greeting the change of seasons with excitement and joy and we understand that this plays an important role in children forming a beautiful relationship with their environment.
This week the children have made full use of our base camp area, the oak trees that sit in the middle of this area provide the perfect place to hang rope swings and ladders. Some of our new children have launched at the opportunity to develop their skills in trying to climb the ladders and with adult support they have been trying to work out which leg should go where and how to use their arms for support. It may take a little practice, but it doesn’t usually take long for children to begin to master these skills and overcome the new challenge. As well as the obvious physical skills that are developed during activities like this, children also grow in emotional confidence, perseverance, a resilience to failure and a great sense of their own capabilities and achievements.
The children have really enjoyed pulley systems this week; they have experimented with lifting different types of loads from the forest floor into the air. With other children wanting to use the tape measure to measure the height they had climbed on the trees, our Big Forest Folk have been reminded that children will engage with mathematical concepts in their own play when it can be self motivated, fun and centred within their interests.
We have had a great week with our Stay and Play parents this week and we would like to thank all those who came along and made up role-plays, read stories, supported their children while they climbed to new heights and helped new children see that the forest is really fun when mum and dad come to play too!
Little Forest Folk