Yesterday afternoon, the children created an art gallery! Using sticks and whatever else they could find outside, they created some pictures of outdoor scenes, houses and animals. Have a look at the photos below.
Rabbit joined the children in the woods today. She had a lovely time. Indeed Rabbit commented, “ It was wonderful to watch and listen to the children immersed in their activities. There was so much learning taking place without the children even realising it.”
The children enjoyed helping with topping up the woodshed. Look at the dragonfly they found!
Tawny Owl was lucky to be attending a Forest School Conference in West Sussex. She also learned much, and has returned with more ideas for our Forest School. She also made a platter/basket which she plans to try doing with the older children and adults.
What a very busy day today!
Larch group began by gathering timber for cutting and splitting to put in the woodshed. They worked incredibly hard to find appropriate wood - even pushing down a couple of small dead but standing trees! Not only that but then gathering a team of people to carry it back to the Forest School area for cutting.
They then willingly cut the timber and split it. Meanwhile another group were emptying the woodshed so that it could be sorted and restacked.
Everyone worked incredibly hard.
When they weren't helping with this task, they played in the hammocks, or built amazing shelters, climbed trees, or sat and did some weaving. Tawny Owl had bought a couple of Bushcraft magazines and a story 'Weslandia' (which she read to Larch group), which some of the children had a look at.
Birch group did not need to gather timber, but still enjoyed working hard to help prepare it for the woodshed.
This group enjoyed the hammocks, as well as composing some woodland music; watch this space, as they proclaimed they would be making an album!
Tawny Owl is in the process of putting together a video of the day; she will let you know when it appears on this blog.
Meanwhile have a look at the photos below; there will be more on the class 4 gallery.
What a busy day today!
The sun shone which allowed Tawny Owl to dry some of the equipment which became so wet yesterday. The birds sang, and Willow group were able to do some tracking on their way to the Forest School area. We spotted deer footprints in the mud on the footpath, and also talked about rivers as the heavy rain yesterday had left a dry river bed on the footpath.
We began to create Woodland Journals today - each child created a leaf print and a bark rubbing to help learn how to identify some of the variety of trees on our woodland.
The children were keen to make bows and arrows like year 4, so Goldcrest helped some of them learn how to ties a clove hitch by using the story: make a fishy, then a dishy; place the fishy on the dishy.
The mud created after the rain was just the right consistency to make mud ice-creams.
The music tripod os also coming along and several children enjoyed creating melodies, while nearby others hunted for worms, centipedes and woodlice under the sitting logs.
One boy from Willow group also continued the work year 6 had begun on making a bridge.
Look at the class gallery for more photos.
Year 2 had a wonderful day learning in the woods today.
They climbed trees and had a go at making shelters. Ratty showed the children how to create some woodland art, and Tawny Owl, Goldcrest, Blossom and Cuckoo worked together with Eva and Sebastian to begin creating a music stand. Thank you to Blossom who took the xylophone bars home to drill as using the brace and bit was really hard work, although Eva persevered to drill a hole in one of the bars with Goldcrest and Blossom's help, even though the wood was really hard.
Field Maple group sat quietly when they arrived, trying to see if the Thrush would visit it's babies in the nest in the Ash tree to feed them. Sadly the children did not see this happen as they were so keen to go and play! They all ran around playing noisily before settling down to make a see-saw, which the children enjoyed, and worked together to ensure everyone had a happy and safe time.
Tawny Owl showed the children a wood wasp nest which she found in the shed. Lily explained very well how the wasp makes the paper to create it's nest.
We had lovely weather today, although Field Maple groups had to rush to put their coats on when we had a heavy April shower.
Have a look at the class gallery to see more photos.
What can I say! What a wonderful evening was had by all yesterday at our third Arts Festival. Our school motto is 'Enjoy Achieve Together' and last night certainly was an example of this. It was so lovely to see the whole school community, parents, children, governors and of course the stars of the show 'children' coming together to provide an evening of entertainment, fun, laughter and celebration. This year the event was opened by an amazing performance from Emily Allen (known to you as Mrs Mckay who is an actress in her own right)-she certainly set the bar high! This was then followed by a showcase of a wide range of talent by children from the full breadth of the school, an ex pupil Charlotte Ensor, Mr Golledge (a music producer and teacher and parent) and a surprise appearance from Wonder Woman! All the acts received a rapturous applause from a full house of performer's family, friends and members of staff. The evenings proceedings were masterfully led by the schools Arts Council as the audience enjoyed performances ranging from instrumental, to modern dance, to poetry recitals, to the school Choir and forgetting the Staff SClub 8. Thank you to Ella for doing Lighting, Jake for the Sound and the PTFA for providing refreshments during the interval, indeed the evening was a truly magnificent affair, with children and parents beaming from ear to ear. Video to follow!
Alongside the celebration we made a presentation acknowledging the outstanding contribution to the Arts by one of our children. The Lindsay Roberts Arts Award recognises talent, commitment and aspiration towards achievement in the Arts, be it at performance level of something someone has simply done for joy. Congratulations to Gemma Brassley who was awarded the "Lindsay Roberts" Arts Award for 2018.
Her love of drama began with the school nativity plays in KS1 and she has participated in the drama club productions. She had her first major part last year, playing Prospero in her class production of The Tempest at the Shakespeare School Festival at the Trinity Theatre in Tunbridge Wells. Mr Gilder describe his experience of working with Gemma:
“Gemma was a true leader by example when Year 5 rehearsed and performed The Tempest at the end of last year. I particularly remember one rehearsal, about two weeks in, when we were sitting in a circle going through the play and got to the final scene, in which Gemma's character had most of the lines and was responsible for tying up all the loose ends of what is Shakespeare's most complex play. Robin didn't have her script with her, so Gemma said she could borrow hers but asked Robin to keep it open so if she forgot any lines she could look down and see them. She proceeded to deliver all her lines crisply and clearly, with a total understanding of the script. When we finished the whole of the Year 5 cast were silent and just looked at her in astonishment. Then they clapped her. It was a great moment for Gemma but also for the rest of the children because it made them really believe in each other and that they really could do Shakespeare. So, when it came to writing this scene for the Arts Festival I knew I needed to stretch Gemma. I deliberately wrote her a character that firstly sits and listens which is a vital discipline for actors to perfect. Then she had the big wordy difficult speech towards the end that I knew she would relish.”
Gemma is also an enthusiastic and committed member of the school choir and has enjoyed two trips to the O2 as well as performances at the Summer fetes and church services. This year I am sure you would agree that she flourished in delivering her first solo performance to you this evening. She has singing lessons with Kent Music at school and will be taking her Grade One exam this Summer.
She is also a member of the Kilndown Youth Choir meeting every Saturday morning. Her choir master, Julian Wells says "Gemma is a truly inspirational member of the Kilndown Community Choir. She has a beautiful singing voice, incredible musicality for her age and an ability to really engage her audience. Her ability to learn all of the words is also legendary! She inspires all of her fellow choir members, both children and adults and is such an asset to the choir." She has performed at several concerts and sang her first solo at the Advent Family Service in Christ Church.
Don't worry if you missed it, click on the video to find out more.
....and a memorable finale to this years' Arts' Festival - S Club 8 hit the stage.
Almost year 6's last ever Forest School Session.
They planted tree seeds for their buddies - the idea being that the seeds will be germinated and growing before the end of the year, when year 6 will hand them on to their buddies in YR, who will then nurture them throughout their time at Goudhurst and Kilndown; planting out when large enough.
'Poetree' was composed, practised and performed. Friendship and teamwork was a key theme to today's sessions.
Leon and Jack were noticed especially for all their hard work in composing, practising and performing their poem as well as finding and transporting LARGE pieces of timber for cutting for the fire. Well done boys!
Look at the year 6 gallery for more photos, and watch this space for a video of their poetry.
This is the first time that snow has closed us down at Forest School. How disappointing. However, Buzzard took Noah for a walk down beside 'our' wood and took these photos. It looks just beautiful.
Tawny Owl had planned to make ice and snow sculptures with Hippos and Lions this week - alas it was not meant to be, but here are some photos of the examples she made. Can you see what she used?
Perhaps if this cold weather continues, you could have a go? It is a good use of recycled plastic pots of various shapes/sizes. If I was to repeat the activity, I would make them shallower to allow the light to shine through - although it was very grey and threatening morew when they were photographed.
The tracks in the snow are a pheasant and possibly a badger which has walked across Tawny Owl's garden.
we have been looking at the works of Georges Seurat and have done lots of artwork relating to pointillism. The children have created beautiful pictures for their homework, and this week we used pointillism for shading, we practiced first, then painted apples using this technique.
With a wind chill below freezing point, Year 6 braved the elements to conduct a field trip of the coast around Whitstable - a first for Goudhurst & Kilndown. We investigated coastal erosion (spits, longshore drift, groynes etc), visited a working fishing harbour and had a superb visit around the RNLI station; all polished off with a portion of chips. We even saw example of sustainable energy (from our Science last term) - the North Kent Wind Farm!
Please see the stunning photos from Mrs Chapman in our gallery.