Wimbledon - Yoga in the forest

Our Week in the Forest...

It has been a busy week in the forest with children imitating adult life. Sticks were stripped of their bark and turned into mobile phones and walkie talkies to aid their play as people commuting to work in their log cars and forest educators asking, "Katarina, have you got the dome up?". One girl had even fashioned herself a wooden iPad which she used to help her in her task of looking after her children!

However, the 'adults' soon found the pace of the forest had changed, having to zoom around trying to get to work, sweeping a building site that just never gets clean, having to re-do Poppy's hair as she is forever changing her mind about the style she wants and why on Earth do little ones not sit still through the best bit of Frozen? Oh, the pressure!

In a small clearing, one child thought she would change the pace by opening a pop-up yoga studio. She laid on the floor facedown and was using her hands to push her chest off the floor and tilting her head back - "This is the cobra pose" she said as two other children joined in, copying her position. More and more children abandoned their mobile phones and adult tasks to join in as their yoga teacher carefully demonstrated different asanas, "This is child's pose" "This is the doggy" and finally we had lots of Forest Folk-ers trying to stand on one foot as they replicated "The tree".

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Not before long we had some of the students talking about their yoga experiences - some children's yoga classes use storytelling and one boy was keen to show how you put your hands together and say "Namaste". It is clear that children experience a range of benefits from the yoga experiences they have and sharing this with friends, there was a real sense of calm and focus as they concentrated on their moves and breathing and the forest educators couldn't help but notice how this group of children were aware of how their minds and bodies were feeling while being adults and having a strategy at hand to help restore some much needed zen. The importance of this skill can so easily be overlooked for children as they are learning to identify ways to regulate their physical and emotional states.

The fire pit was busy this week - children have been helping Sam, Sarah and Spike slice open bananas, filling them with chocolate pieces and homemade marshmallow and devouring the melted magic by the spoonful. Christie and Hannah have facilitated lots of adventure walks this week, the children noticed the fish pond has been looking very shallow with less rain recently but this did give them chance to discover a tiny black frog that provided the inspiration for many a made-up story once they returned to site.

We would like to express a huge thanks for being such supportive families and for giving us the opportunity to be an integral part of this precious time in your children’s lives. Wishing all our children who will be leaving the best for the future and we are looking forward to all the new adventures with those who will be returning in September, and who undoubtedly will be the most delightful role models for all the new children. We hope you all have some exciting things planned over the weekend but if you find yourself at a loose end we highly recommend getting your yoga mats out and letting your children teach you the art of rest and relaxation!

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Little Forest Folk