The children have been busy again this week, taking part in 30 Days Wild.
Louis, Rowan, Ollie, Beau and Evie created some beautiful pieces of artwork from natural materials and Amelia C made some delicious looking Elderflower Cordial. Joseph, Evelyn-Rose and Freddie looked at some webcams to observe sea birds, Roseate Terns and Osprey. Finley also enjoyed watching the starlings in his garden eating the bird picnic he had made for them. Hollie's plants are growing well, and Zachary found a beautiful toad.
I think you'll agree that we have very talented children in our school.
Next week, Year One (Miss Wilford's Bubble) will be returning to Forest School on Friday. I am so excited, as I know many of the children are too, so I look forward to sharing true Forest School activities with you next weekend.
I am really missing the time I spend in the woods with you all, but I am trying to get outside every day to help my well-being and mental health.
I have been trying to get a walk in everyday, which has been quite challenging at times as lots of people are out walking with their families which is fabulous, but makes social distancing tricky. It has not put me off! I am using it as an opportunity to revise my knowledge of plants, and often return with a photo to identify or question to answer.
We have been blessed with the weather. I have tried to keep my woodland skills up and have spent a good deal of time cleaning and sharpening all the tools ready for when we start again. I have also been practising my pyrography – creating some ‘tokens’ for the Hide when we return, and a label for my new grandson's pear tree which we planted just before lockdown (BL).
In my garden I am creating a bug hotel and have started a wildlife pond; this is taking a while to become established but I am hoping as the weather warms up I will begin to see the creatures move in. The birds and squirrels have discovered it as a good source of water, in fact the wood pigeons decimated my Marsh Marigold (they thought it was lovely and tasty), which I am now trying to nurture back to health in my tiny ‘polytunnel’.
I have planted a hedge using a mixture of plants: Hawthorn, Blackthorn, Field Maple, Crab Apple, Buddleia, Silver Birch, Hazel, Holly, Dog Rose, Sweet Chestnut; some of these plants I grew myself from seed, some I bought from the Woodland Trust BL.
I would love to know what you have all been getting up to - please send me a little 'report' with a photo of your outdoor adventures, and I will put them onto our 'Forest School' Blog at the end of each week so everyone can see what you have been up to.
Mrs Stimpson kindly sent us a couple of photos she took when she was out walking - can you spot her 'Tree Man'? The beautiful picture of the bluebell wood is also hers.
I am really missing you all; keep in touch.
Years 3, 4 and 5 walked to St Mary's Church on Wednesday morning for a special Ash Wednesday Service led by Caroline. Unfortunately, half of Year 5 were not there as they were in Forest School. So not to miss out, Caroline quickly dashed down to Forstal Woods when the service was over.....
Caroline arrived carrying a huge rucksack. She talked to the group about preparing for a journey – linking with Advent and Lent as a time of preparation. She made a link about being superhuman; asking the children what super powers they would choose. She used James as her ‘model’ and unpacked her rucksack, bringing out food, water, boots, coat, a map etc. She linked this up with story Jesus in the wilderness, and talked about Him being tempted, and the idea that we need to rely on God to help us. The children listened attentively and respectfully, responding well to her questions. Caroline then explained about Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday and went around the circle ‘ashing’ those who wished to.
Last night I popped down to Bewl Water to join Year 6 for dinner! They are all having a fabulous time, they have been so lucky with the weather this week, they all looked so healthy and were full of excitement having spent two whole days on the water already. Please read their blog to find out more.
Here are a few photographs taken of things we have been up to in our first 3 weeks at school.
First time staying for lunch
First time in the sandpit
First time using some of the maths equipment
First time playing with the outdoor scales
Riding the bikes
We've been doing some different art projects this week, including using chalks to shade and using our sketchbooks to record observations. We've created some lovely pieces of art which are now in display in the classroom.
Here's a quick collage of what we've been doing
Following a picnic lunch, the school then opened its' classroom doors and parents were warmly invited to experience an afternoon in the life of Goudhurst & Kilndown pupil. There was a real buzz throughout the school and lots of parents commented on how it had been a wonderful day, just perfect!
Have a look at the video for a tase of what year one have been learning in the last couple of weeks.
Year 6 chose to have a whole day in the woods today.
Wren provided a shuttle to run the children to the wood in 2 groups.
It was not a usual Forest School session because there were 28 children to support.
They began with a game of Beetle Tag, after a small group had chosen an area to play. The children played with enthusiasm and good humour (although Tawny Owl began to feel that she was being caught an awful lot, however, she quite enjoyed lying on the ground with her arms and legs waving in the air)!
After this game, the children separated into groups to carry out activities. As there were so many children Tawny Owl requested that all the children needed to participate in 2 of the activities. Sadly, some of the group decided that this instruction didn't apply to them; not good team work.
However, many children enjoyed the activities on offer: cooking (menu below), making fire sticks, cutting and splitting wood, carrying out a bioblitz (results in the photos), finishing off obstacle course activities.
Trout cooked in newspaper
Chocolate dipped fruit
The day was over before we knew it! There was a lot of equipment to carry, but we managed to get everything back to the minibus/cars in good time.
Tawny Owl would especailly like to thank Mouse who gives up her valuable time volutarily. Thank you Mouse.
Thank you Mr Price for some of the trout!
Thank you also to Wren who works so hard to support Tawny Owl with her hare-brained ideas!
Thank you everyone! Remember all you have learned year 6, and good luck in your new schools.
Have a look at the main set of photos on the class gallery.