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Archive for June, 2016

Maples Magic Potions

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Maples were faced with a bit of a problem this morning. Mrs.Smith, try as she might, just couldn’t get the fire steel (which we use for making a spark and lighting a fire) to work. We REALLY want to have a fire next week, so decided that we should make some magical potions…that might magic the fire steel back into action!

All round the forest, there were pots and boxes with special ingredients inside. And lots of magical water too, to help mix everything together…


Maples chose a special pot and went off to make their own magical fire potions, adding any ingredients they wanted…and choosing their own ideas too. P1130103P1130101P1130106P1130108P1130109P1130111 P1130114P1130117

When the potions were complete, everyone took turns to pour them into our big cauldron…thinking of their own magical words to say as they gave the pot a stir!P1130118P1130120P1130124P1130126P1130131

Then, as if by magic-Mrs. Smith tried the fire steel again….and this time it made a really big spark! Maples were delighted! And all had a turn at making a spark…ready for next week’s fire.


Beautiful Butterflies by Oaks and Firs

Monday, 27 June 2016

Group 1 from Oaks and Firs enjoyed a busy morning doing lots of exciting things!


They learnt how to hold and safely use a hammer. Then learnt how to make a Hapazome picture, by selecting  a leaf or flower head, placing inside our cotton butterfly, folding it in half…and then bashing it with the hammer. The shape and colour transferred onto the cloth, just like magic!


Elsewhere, individual butterfly pictures were created, using natural resources collected from the forest floor…P1130067P1130068P1130069P1130090P1130082P1130084P1130081

There was also a lot of work going on in the digging pit! Buried under the soil, were all the things the Hungry Caterpillar had eaten. The children found and dug up the food cards then matched them to the big pictures, working out which day of the week the caterpillar had eaten them on.


Mums and dads…you should be very proud! In a relatively short space of time, our little Oaks and Firs have become so much more independent and chatty, they are working and playing together better, beginning to help one another, are turn taking and have developed a good understanding of the rules and boundaries of Forest School. They are an absolute pleasure to work with.

Maples-Loppers, wands blindfolds and more!

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Today Maples were given the opportunity to use another tool…this time it was the loppers. The children listened carefully to a tool talk, so that they knew exactly how to hold and use the loppers safely. We also talked about Wizard Lizard’s magic flower wand and wondered if we could create something something ourselves. So off they went, taking turns to choose a special stick that they imagined would make a really good magic wand!


Once the stick was cut, the children set about turning it into a wand…


They looked great! And when we tested the magic, the wands seemed to work very well!


Aside from the magic, other exciting things were happening today…including a trust and co-operative game involving blindfolds. The children took turns to lead one another to a tree, allowing the blindfolded child to feel the tree trunk. Then they were led away by their partner, the blindfold was removed and the children then had to find which tree they had been feeling! It was much trickier than they imagined, but everyone tried very hard and enjoyed the game.


Also…this hard working group of 3 boys spent a long time working together. Apparently, they were digging through the earth to reach both Japan and New York! Unfortunately they ran out of time before reaching there…but there’s always next week!


Then there was the building brigade! An amazing house/block of flats was created from things found around the forest. The slug hidey hole we discovered was covered over again to keep them safe.




Puddles Galore for Oaks and Firs!

Monday, 20 June 2016

The chance to have some splashing good fun was too good to miss today! So dressed head to toe in waterproofs, group 2 from Oaks ans Firs headed out in the rain to play in the puddles!

P1130010P1130020P1130014 It was wonderful to see them having such a great time…investigating, discovering, experimenting….and laughing lots!

Ready…steady…JUMP and splash!P1130016P1130019P1130013P1130012P1130017

After all the water play, the children still had the energy to explore all the way to the far end of our site, doing a little balancing on the way.


A little bit of rain never hurt anyone! And we certainly had no complaints-just lots of smiles today.

Willows indoor day…

Thursday, 16 June 2016

­For the first time this year, rain stopped play! When Mrs Smith went out to set up in the morning, she found a river running along the paths! And enormous puddles, that looked lovely to jump in…but were unfortunately too big and deep to be safe around.

So Willows had an adventure inside instead.

We set up a den and looked at some lovely Forest School stories…


We selected a pebble to paint…and made them into beautiful bees and lovely ladybirds


And we worked together to create a wonderful worm! Everyone took turns to learn to use a hacksaw to cut a section of elder, which was hollow in the centre.


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Once everyone had cut some wood, we gathered together to take turns to thread the pieces onto some string.


Willows worm was complete!

A busy morning…but we’re glad the puddles have now disappeared so we can get back outside next time.


Oaks and Firs Leaf threading

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

This week, Group 1 enjoyed remembering and retelling the story of The Hungry Caterpillar. We talked about all the food the caterpillar had eaten, and decided that leaves were the best food for caterpillars….So we took a little stick caterpillar and looked for lots of different leaves for him to eat his way through!

The children focused and concentrated brilliantly, and worked really hard to push the caterpillar through a long string of juicy leaves…


The children were very proud of their work and were excited to be taking them home…we hope you liked them mums and dads!


We also thought about the chrysalis that the caterpillar made…and decided to turn a den into a giant child sized chrysalis. Everyone squeezed inside and counted lots of days…


…until out came lots of butterflies! Who flew and flapped around the forest testing their wings.P1120770P1120771P1120772

Wizard Lizards Lair…

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Last time Willows were at Forest School, they started to notice and be interested in the dens that other children had created…so this week we decided to make our own.


We looked at Wizard Lizard’s Lair in our story, ‘Superworm’ and talked about how a lair is another name for a den. Then we set about making our own Wizard Lizard Lair!

First we learnt how to safely move big sticks and branches around the site.We learnt to find a space, to look where we were going and to drag the long stick with one end on the ground. Willows were very good at remembering these rules.


Then we worked in small groups to make some fabulous looking lairs! This one was made with long bamboo canes, which the children placed into scaffold blocks. Then they chose different material to wrap around it. Inside was a sleeping wizard…at the back was a window. Lots of fun was had both waking the wizard, and running away from him and serving tea and ice-cream through the window in the back!


This group made a lair, covered it with tarpaulin, then swept a path to lead inside. They even laid flooring to sit on!



Our last Lizard lair was just as good as the others! These children spent time choosing and moving their sticks…and enjoyed showing their friends and inviting them inside to try it out.


After all that work…as a special treat, drinks and biscuits were taken to the dens


And there was still time after this to play in the dens, to choose another forest activity, to explore and find things…and most importantly, to have fun!



Maples make Elder worms

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Maples had a wonderful morning! They are proving to be a really hard working and enthusiastic group, who are making noticeable progress in so many areas. They are now very good at using the Forest School site independently and are remembering things they have done in previous weeks…and using them to develop their own ideas and make their own choices.

So whilst the adults were assisting the children in using tools and making Elder worms…lots of other lovely things were going on!

We looked at an Elder tree and noticed how the sticks had a soft pith in the middle. We looked at the Superworm Mrs. Smith had made, by cutting an elder stick into small pieces, poking out the soft middle, and threading the pieces onto wire.

P1120645P1120648P1120657P1120659P1120668P1120669P1120671P1120672 Then the children learnt to use the hacksaws, to cut their own sections of elder.

Once cut, the pith was carefully removed…

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Then the sections were threaded onto some wire. This proved very tricky!


But everyone persevered, concentrated hard and completed their Superworms.  Maples class were all very proud of their efforts…and couldn’t wait to take their worms home!


Whilst all this was going on, look what else the children did…                                                                                  bug hunting (and using the id chart to identify what was found), discovering (interesting mushrooms had appeared over the holiday), recreating the bucket pulley systems and a balancing game