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Forest School Blog

Archive for May, 2018

Our beautiful butterflies fly free…

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Very exciting things have been happening at Langley School this week. The caterpillars we have been watching grow, had turned into butterflies over the weekend!

This is what they looked like on week one…

They ate lots of food, until they were much much bigger! Then a few days later, they started to crawl to the top of the pot.

The caterpillars hung off the lid forming a crysallis-they were getting ready to turn into these beautiful butterflies.

On Monday morning, Beeches, Oaks and Firs all went out into Butter-bee garden to release the butterflies, hoping they would be happy there, and enjoy our butterfly-friendly flowers. Beeches had named them Harry, Meghan, Louis, Honey and Tiger, and one by one we released them. Not all of them were ready to fly away! But as they did, we all cheered and clapped and waved them off on their way.

 

Beeches busy busy day…

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

What a lot we did today! Beeches worked really hard and as always were full of enthusiasm for everything.

The first job of the day involved a lot of teamwork. The children worked together to plant a young Ash tree. We looked carefully at the grey bark, the black buds and counted 9 leaves on each of the leaf stems, then took turns to put compost into the bottom of the large hole that had been prepared beforehand. Next we carefully placed the tree into the hole and filled it with more compost. We put the grass back on top and gave the ash tree lots of water. We’re looking forward to watching how much our new tree grows and enjoys its new home.

Then, after a request from the children, we checked back on the tadpoles in our pond. We learnt that it takes 6-12 weeks for tadpoles to develop into frogs. We watched them swimming around and noticed that although they were fatter, they still hadn’t developed back legs.

Next we discussed the very exciting news that the blue-tit eggs in our birdbox had hatched this morning. The children were very excited and were keen to watch the newborn chicks on the live YouTube feed. We watched the birds collect grubs and caterpillars and feed the babies…and made sure that we were very quiet as we tip-toed past the birdbox on our way into the woods

Once in the woods, we discussed the caterpillars that Beeches have been looking after for the last couple of weeks. They have watched them grow from tiny caterpillars, to big ones and this week they curled up into a chrysalis, ready to become a butterfly. So todays choices included creating a caterpilar life cycle to show the different stages of growth so far, and making a butterfly feeder, ready for  when they emerge.

The life cycle was made by attaching a tiny sticky ‘egg’ to some wool at one end, then finding a small thin stick for the caterpillar, a bigger fatter stick to represent the caterpillar as it grew, and finally a cone wrapped up in wool for the chrysalis.

Painting fun in Foundation

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Group 2 from Oaks and Firs had a lovely time this week, creating some artwork using these forest school paint brushes…made by tying different leaves onto a stick.

It didn’t take them long to get stuck in and to start experimenting…

When we ran out of paint, we decided to make our own by digging and collecting lots of soil and mixing it with water…

We used it to finish our amazing forest school art. Well done Group 2!

Watch our Bird Box Live!

Thursday, 10 May 2018

We’ve all been excitedly watching our very own Langley School blue tits through our bird box camera, for a month or so now. We saw both birds as they built a nest, we watched the female begin to sleep in it overnight, then saw her lay an egg a day until there were 11 in total. Since last Tuesday, she’s been sitting on the eggs, incubating them. Usually it takes 13-15 days, so we should start to see some chicks hatching soon!

The live YouTube link can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aslFunAG2-o

This is the latest video…

And there are lots more videos on our YouTube page, so you can scroll through and watch all the action at any time…just search YouTube for Bird Box Langley or click here.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLuUbi6FpbY8MYWUYTAhqCA/videos?view=0&shelf_id=0&sort=dd

…and enjoy watching!

 

Frog life cycles…Forest School style!

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

The tadpoles in our pond are growing quickly…we noticed that their bodies were much fatter than when we looked last week! We scooped a few out of the pond, to have a closer look at…

Outside, we started off our very rainy session with a fun game of ‘tadpoles beware!’ We talked about which animals might try to eat the tadpoles, and decided thar cats and birds would be our ‘predators’ for the game. Everyone wriggled and pretended to swim around like tadpoles…but as soon as they heard a ‘miaow’ or ‘tweet-tweet’, the children had to quickly hide on a ‘lilly pad’ (a tyre or hoop) before the cat or bird caught them. We all had great fun playing this game, using good listening skills and helping one another to escape and keep safe.

Then we thought about what we already knew about frogs…and decided where to stand along the knowledge line. Everyone chose where to stand…depending on whether they could tell us 1-2 frog facts, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8 or an impressive 9-10 things about frogs.

Next we listened to and learnt lots of things about frogs! We learnt that they are amphibians (meaning they live on land and in water) we learnt what they like to eat, their life cycle, how they move and lots more. Then we worked in 3 groups, to produce a picture on the ground of either frogspawn, a tadpole or a frog. The discussions, creativity and results were brilliant! Look at what Beeches made…

The frogspawn was made with lots of stones, gathered and placed carefully by this group. They completed it by adding little spots of mud onto the middle of the stones, to represent to eggs inside the spawn.

 

This wonderful tadpole was made by first drawing an outline in the ground with a stick, and then lining the outside of the shape with sticks, before filling the middle with leaves. Perfect!

Lastly, the frog! It started off with a green belly, then was given a lovely big body, four legs and big bulging eyes. We were very impressed with how well Beeches worked (and cooperated with one another) on this task.

We also had LOTS of fun jumping through this big muddy puddle, pretending to be a frog! Some of us didn’t mind getting  just a little bit splashed!!

At the end of the morning, we thought about how much we’d learnt, and allowed the children to decide whereabouts on the knowledge line they now were. It was great to see that all they recognised that they had moved up the line and that they could now tell us a little bit more about frogs.

 

 

The Hungry Caterpillars

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

A really lovely first  session today for Group 2 in Oaks and Firs. They started the morning looking at these very small caterpillars. We will be watching them grow and change into butterflies over the coming weeks.

Then we went on a picture hunt, looking for hidden pictures around the woods. Everyone got involved, finding them in all sorts of places!

When the pictures were all found, we gathered in the log circle, looked at them all and then read a story- ‘The very Hungry Caterpillar’.  As we read each page, the children selected the matching picture…and pegged it onto a line.

As always, a busy morning investigating… with lots of activities to choose from and lots of enthusiasm!

 

LANGLEY IS A SCHOOL WHERE INDIVIDUALS ARE VALUED FOR THEMSELVES
AND WHERE ALL ARE EXPECTED TO GIVE OF THEIR BEST