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Newburn Manor Primary School

Learning together, growing together

group 2

Winter Solstice 21/12/22

The shortest day of the year, that means that things will start to get lighter. Of course, we will not notice any difference for a while yet but still it is quite exciting and so I thought we should celebrate the solstice in some manner.

After a very relaxed walk to the dene, stopping at all the horses and ponies and collecting interesting things that would make a good crown we arrived at the Forest School site. In the trolley I had packed a lot of ‘wood biscuits. We drilled these and some children made them into tree decorations whilst others made snowmen. It was very hard to drill the holes. We snapped one drill and then the bit came out of the handle of another. I don’t know what was going on but we managed in the end.

Other children decided that they wanted to have rope adventures and make a fire to get warm. They set off to have fun. Needless to say, no fires were lit. After a welcome hot drink and snack there was time to reflect in a quite space before coming back to school in time for lunch.

Crafting Wolves in the Dene 30/11/22

Even though it wasn’t as cold as I thought it was going to be we still spent time making sure the children had on the right clothes. Extra gloves, hats, trousers and coats were given out so that the children could enjoy themselves.

We have made good friends with some of the horses that we see every week. We were surprised to find some new ones. They were dressed in their winter coats too. Of course, we also said hello to Mr. Mustachio who was there although his friends the miniature ponies had left.

As we got further into the dene, I noticed that the stream was not as full as it has been. I wanted to throw some stones, I like making splashes. Unfortunately, the rain has washed down a lot of glass so we had to move to a safer spot, but there were less big stones to splash; - a good time to reach our Forest School spot.

For some reason as we approached our Forest School area the children started to howl like wolves. I guess they were just happy to be there. We then spent some time making some interesting wolf marks. The children had fantastic ideas of what special marks a wolf might make and what their wolf names might be.

Last week children had asked to have the hammocks so we put some of those up. Other children wanted to make some wood biscuit decorations so Mrs. Heslop helped children with that.

There was time for refreshments, a game of Oggle Poggle and our quite reflection time. We had a very good Forest School session this week.

Angels, Adventures and Dens 23/11/22

First order of the day, on a day like today ……. Get up a tarp so that we could keep dry.

We had a lovely walk down into the dene. The children are always so observant and great at finding a myriad of different things to be interested in. This week they found some interesting foot prints, (horse), that we tracked to see where they had gone. We meet some new miniature ponies and said hello to the horse with a moustache. One child found some dinosaur plants, (ferns) and another identified a blackbird and a robin.

The slope from the short-cut the children like to take was especially slippy, which made it extra fun. We spent a bit longer than usual playing up and down the slope.

Usually the children would play a game whilst I put a shelter but this week the children were fascinated by the process. When it was time to choose an activity, some children wanted to put up their own shelter. We gave out rope and tarpaulins so that they could have a go. Of course, rope on a slope is still very popular, especially on such a muddy day. They loved slip sliding down the slope, but as I am sure you are aware it does make them very muddy. Please, warm clothes that you won’t mind getting dirty for the next few weeks. A few children chose to work on some lovely leaf angels. We had to carefully choose the leaf colour to get the halo. I loved the way it turned out.

After all this we still had time for a hot drink and little snack, quiet reflection and our farewell song before walking back to school for our lunch.

Furry Friends in the Dene 09/11/2022

Today we walked into the dene. We will do this most weeks from now on. The path can sometimes get very muddy and wet indeed so don’t forget to pack spare clothes for your children as thry may get wet!

We, of course, found a lot of interesting things on our walk. I love it when the horse comes to say hello. He was very happy to see us. He has a little moustache on his top lip so for some reason we call him Mustachio Pete.

When we got to the dene and to our Forest School site I got out some puppets that I have of the woodland creatures that we might find in the wood. We talked about the difference between the fox and badger and the other animals. The children then made some excellent dens for their animals. Those animals that could climb had dens in trees, those that could hid had them in amongst the leaves and for some they had their own stick shelter they could hide in. It was hard for fox and badger to find any food. Luckily, we all had some hot chocolate and a snack to keep us going.

After we had our refreshments there was just enough time to play ‘rope adventure’. There are some good climbers in year 1.

We were all back in time for lunch.

Autumn Leaves 02/11/2022

It was exciting to meet the new group today. It was a cool autumn morning and we had to loan out some warm hats and over trousers. There is nothing worse than feeling cold when you want to get on and do things in the outside.

Today there were a lot of fungi out. I recognised the Shaggy Inkcaps and knew that you could get an amazing dark ink from them so we picked a few and tried to make prints with them. We experimented with several ways; some just left a splodgey mess but eventually we found a good way to get a print.

Looking on the ground we saw the amazing colours of the leaves and those too inspired us. We used paints to make prints of the leaves. We then turned those prints into different patterns and pictures. What an artistic group.

In between all this creativity we still had time to climb trees, play in the hammocks, have games and enjoy a cup of hot chocolate. At the end of our session we finish with a quiet reflection where we get too think about what we liked about the time we spent in Forest School. You can understand that there never seems to be enough time!