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Forest School Blog

Archive for October, 2018

A spiky friend for Firs and Oaks

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Our youngest children concentrated really hard today, when using a hammer to tap sticks into a pumpkin, in order to make a fabulous forest hedgehog! They were very proud of their efforts…as were we.

Lots of other things were going on today, including litter picking, investigating twigs and leaves, climbing, balancing and bouncing…

And we enjoyed playing with our wood numbers-using them in counting and matching with natural objects from the  forest floor.

Saxon Stew and toasted Marshmallows

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

It was Larches last morning in Forest School today…so we celebrated our lovely half-term in the woods, by lighting another fire and cooking some delicious treats. We started off with Saxon Stew…we put some vegetables in tin foil, poured in some vegetable stock, then wrapped the foil up tight to keep all the flavours in.

Next we took turns to carefully place our stew onto the embers of the fire to cook.

When the stew was cooked, we opened up the parcels…and really enjoyed our tasty Saxon food!

Lastly, we used the sticks we’d prepared last week to toast a marshmallow…yummy!


Autumn collections

Wednesday, 17 October 2018

There are so many beautiful colours, shapes and sizes of leaves falling onto our forest floor this week. Today Oaks and Firs could choose to make a special collecting sheet by finding their favourite leaves and ‘forest finds’, and sticking them onto their card. We also found acorns, berries, feathers, sticks and bark.

Today turned out to be a bit of a climbing day, with children finding new places to experiment with, as well as familiar ones…

We also saw some co-operative den building -a first for these boys. And some wonderful investigation of a large log  whilst another group of children were playing in a different den. They were completely fascinated with the bark and how it looked and felt when pulled apart.

We saw developing independence, curiosity, engagement, organisation, developing relationships and imagination in shared play, as well as hearing some lovely speech. A perfect day for staff and children alike. We all had a super time.


Knife work with Larches…

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

A super proud day today. Larches proved how far they’ve come in their Forest School journey, by making Mrs Smith very proud of how safe, sensible and focussed they were when given the opportunity to use a knife.

Everyone listened and responded to a knife ‘tool talk’ and every child was able to show us how to sit, where to position the knife when cutting, how and where to hold it correctly, which direction to use it in and what to do with it after they had finished. Larches were able to follow all the safety rules and showed real concentration and determination. Whittling their sticks into a point wasn’t easy and it took some time. But the satisfaction of achieving a perfect point (for a marshmallow to go on next week) was great to see. Well done Larches.

Foundation Fun…

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

A beautiful warm Autumnal day in Forest School, saw us exploring, learning and  having a lovely time! We were –Adventurers-balancing and climbing                        Scientists-mixing experimenting and observing changes    Mathematicians-creating numbers from natural materials    Chefs-cooking up and describing different dishes  Engineers-planning and building bridges    Environmentalists-finding out about and caring for our wildlife                                                                    Artists-creating marks on unusual surfaces!                        and at one with nature…loving being outdoors and using all our senses to learn about the world.

Take a look at our favourite Forest School day so far…we’re feeling very proud of our little superstars.


Anglo Saxon Damper Bread…

Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Larches put all their good practise to work today, and successfully worked together to make a fire and cook on it.  Firstly they collected all the different  sticks they needed, thinking carefully about grading them in order of thickness.  Then they remembered and talked about the 3 elements that make a successful fire-heat, oxygen and fuel. The children built the fire, lit it, then took turns to add to it until it was hot enough to cook on.

Whilst the logs burnt down a little, we looked  at the damper bread instructions. Then everyone squashed up their flour, salt, sugar and water in a small zip-lock bag to make a bread dough…

The dough was carefully wrapped around the sticks we had prepared and cleaned last week, and the sticks were then placed over the hot embers  to cook. We needed to make sure we twistied the stick round to cook the dough evenly and watched as the dough changed colour and cooked through. We were very pleased with the results…the bread tasted lovely!



Mud, mud glorious mud!

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

What a lovely messy day we’ve had today! Oaks started off the morning by working together to dig lots of soil…

Once our tray was full, we took turns to add water and gave it all a good stir. Then the fun began! We squished and squashed and played with the mud. We stood in it, jumped in it…and even sat in it! We made footprints and handprints and had a really fabulous time! And when Firs went out this afternoon, they chose to use the brushes to create a lovely muddy picture.

There was so much going on today…from balancing to weighing and swinging to investigating. We saw a super-brave climber, a den builder, a music maker, a master chef and a designer…and heard some fabulous talking too.All in all, a great day out in the woods!




Rune-writing and Tool work

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Today in Forest School, we learnt some new skills, including tree identification, how to use loppers and how to read Saxon Rune symbols!

Next week we want to make a fire to cook damper bread on. We want to be just like the Saxons, and forage for the sticks we will be using to twist the dough around, before it is placed over the fire. So we started off the morning with a ‘tool talk’, learning how to hold and use the loppers, enabling us to cut the sticks safely.

Then we looked closely at what a hazel tree looks like, discussing the shape of the leaves. We talked about how the hazel sticks grow very straight, so are great for cooking on.

We looked around the woods at all the different trees, trying to match up our hazel leaf picture to a real hazel leaf. After a lot of discussion and looking, we found one…

Everyone selected and cut their own stick to use next week…

Some of the children worked closely with Mrs Smith, listening to another tool talk, and learning how to strip the bark from the hazel stick using a knife. They were very sensible, listened well, worked with care and most importantly, were very proud of their efforts.

Elsewhere in the woods, there were some very clever children hard at work finding rune symbols, decoding them and then working really hard to make different rune symbol words using sticks! look at how well they did…