Wimbledon - Forest maps

Our Week in the Forest...

The Easter school holidays finally arrived and so our forest has benefited from a number of siblings and older children joining in with our Spring adventures. Maps have been a big interest this week and a few children sat with Xiao and discussed what they know about maps. Some of the comments included “X is where you find the treasure!”, “They are used by pirates” and “they help you find the baddies!”.
In their play in the forest the children have been drawing and sharing maps with each other and going on adventures with friends across the meadow as they follow where the maps lead. This has led to some wonderful storytelling as monsters and witches have been discovered along the way. Drawing and following maps help children develop spatial thinking as they use shapes and symbols to represent the mental maps they create through their familiarity with the forest and find meaning in location, direction and trajectory of items. We hope to keep following this interest! 

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The children have also uncovered some wonderful mini beasts this week and upon lifting a log, a spider was discovered. She was sitting on a ball of silk that looked bigger than her body and she refused to move - even when a stick was put close to her. A conversation started between the children, “Is she dead?”, “Is she frozen like Elsa?”, “Maybe she is a statue spider”, but on closer inspection, the truth was unveiled “She has baby eggs in the ball of silk!” - there was some fascination about the new mum and how she will risk her own life in order to keep the eggs hidden and protected until they are ready to hatch. The maternity ward was quickly covered back up and we hope to catch up with the spider family soon! 
Children have also taken great delight in building a working trap this week - a small den was erected with the help of Gavin and the children were very active in helping him tie branches and traps together. They then engineered a door made of tarps that could be closed and secured with a stick. Then the plot began to trap an educator or two who were all lured to the den with “Oh, come and look inside our lovely house”, and once inside, the door was closed shut and the educator was never seen again...well until they learnt how to unclip the tarp door! 
We hope this beautiful weather follows you all into the weekend and we look forward to another week of holiday camp next week.

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Little Forest Folk