Time for a break!

Well, it’s been a great year. Since we started in September, Strong Roots has grown from strength to strength but, now it’s time for a bit of a holiday. We’re off to France for a few days so there will be no contact on here from Tuesday 30th – Saturday 10th Aug.

The Tiny Acorns scheme has developed a great following and is building a strong community of like minded parents, who just want to get their little ones out and exploring the wealth of incredible natural space around them.

 

On top of this, we have run holiday schemes and individual workshops, where each and every person involved went home happy, relaxed, (comfortably exhausted) and having learnt something new.

 

Even more still, we have been booked for several birthday parties. These have been incredible opportunities to give a quick, condensed forest school experience.

But, as I’ve said before, Forest Schools isn’t just for the kids. In this past year we have also worked with adults, offering workshops and schemes to those recovering from addiction or dealing with mental health challenges. (For privacy reasons I can’t post pictures from these)

Still to come this year

There are two weeks of Summer scheme coming up still

12-16th August – Donard Forest

(7-11 years) – 10:00 – 12:30

(12-15 years) – 13:00 – 15.30

19-23rd August – Canal Woods

(7 – 14 years) – 10:00 – 15:00

Plus… We have a family workshop coming up on the August Banks Holiday – Monday 26th

Going into next year

Tiny acorns will be resuming in September with a new flexi-system, and an extra week day. Not only will we meet on Monday mornings, but also Friday afternoons.

We are in talks regarding delivering Forest School schemes to a number of schools in the area.

We will be continuing and extending our holiday schemes.

More one off workshops.

We are also looking into acquiring a permanent space.

Plus much more… so keep a look out for interesting and exciting opportunities to get involved.

Super-duper bird feeders

We had greatly reduced numbers this week, due to some illness and other unavoidable circumstances, but we didn’t let that stop us.

We had an absolutely fab time making really simple, yet effective, feeders to help our little feathered friends get through the rest of this winter.

Step 1:

Gather some sticks about the length of an adult hand.

11-2-19.17.jpg

Step 2:

Add bird seed, grated cheese and, lard or baking fat to a bowl.

Step 3: Get your hands right in there and mash it all up.

Step 4: Take a handful and mash it on to the end of a stick. Repeat until you have a big blob.

Step 5: Use a larks-head knot to tie a piece of string to the stick and close the loop with a simple over-hand knot.

11-2-19.3-e1550079706955.jpg

Step 6: Find somewhere to hang your super-duper bird feeder.

Step 7: Congratulate yourself with a story, cake, and a cup of milk.

Remember, although it looks like a delicious lolly (and you’ll come to no harm from eating it), the mix is meant for birds.

11-2-19.10

And there we have it. We have two weeks left of this block and the next block, starting on March 11th, is filling up fast. If you’d like to get your young’un involved, why not drop us a message  and we’ll get you signed up.

Until next time…

Natural Painting

We had another really lovely session this week. I thought we’d branch out and try something new with our crafty bits by making some natural paints and brushes.

After a little round of hide and seek, I told the children we were going to be doing some painting but we didn’t have any brushes. This was great because it sparked their imagination. After the initial groan of disappointment at having nothing to paint with, they all started thinking about what we could use as brushes and even had the confidence to start throwing out suggestions: leaves, feathers, ferns, sticks.

The next step was making the paint. For this we used turmeric, mud, and the seeds of a  pomegranate that had gone past its best. They loved smashing the pomegranate seeds with a cup…

and then really enjoyed experimenting to make pictures with their made brushes and paints.

 

We rounded the whole thing off with the obligatory story and cake.

 

If you have a child aged between 2 and 5 and think that they’d absolutely love to get out into the woods to be silly and get messy, why not drop me a line and we’ll get you booked up for our next run starting on March 11th.

Tree rubs and wriggly bugs

We came back this week, after having to take a surprise, one week, hiatus, following the early arrival of daughter number two. Florence was born on Sunday morning so there was no way of getting out to the woods the next day. In fact, I don’t think I even left the house until Wednesday and that was to take child one out to a toddlers group and give Mum a bit of a chance to sleep whilst the baby was.

Our focus this week was bugs so we started by getting ourselves warmed up with a bug hunt.

We searched under rocks…

and inside logs…

28-1-19.13.jpg

to see the different bugs to live in those different habitats.

28-1-19.12

We also looked under some dead bark to see what lived there.

After all that, we needed a bit of a rest so we read about some bugs…

and ate some cake.

28-1-19.3

It’s always nice to see your own daughter waiting until she’s offered. Today is not that day.

After all that, we got to know the different trees, and the varying textures of their bark, by doing some tree rubbings.

And there we go. That’s our weekly round up.

We have four weeks left of this run of Tiny Acorns. The next block of six will begin on March 11th.

If you’d like to get your child involved, why not drop us a message and we’ll get you signed up.