Parachutes outdoors are great!

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Forest Celebration Day

60 P4 pupils enjoyed activities in the woods for FSC Friday!

In the morning we had a design a T shirt competition to win a T shirt (kindly donated by the FSC).  Later, we headed outside into the beech woods to sing a rainforest song, make clay animals and then make wee shelters for them.  

A scorpion! (we have been studying rainforests as well as our beech woods!)

 Beautiful beech wood in the autumn sunshine

 snail and hedgehog

shelter for clay animals

 a big shelter for a small clay mouse!

 A few groups made their shelters up trees which I hadn't anticipated...interesting!  One group said they were making an appartment block with flats for their creatures on different floors...maybe a reflection of their personal experience of housing?  Other groups just enjoyed climbing up to make a shelter like a tree house.

 One girl made this amazing mask with her parents at home last night.  She hung it up on this stick to keep it safe while she made her shelter.

 An appartment - work in progress...

A more typical shelter, using a lean to design for this snail.

What struck me was the enthusiasm for being in the woods, with everyone on task all afternoon and only one child asking to go to the toilet in 1 and a half hours, usually unheard of for our P4 classes!  It was so lovely to watch children climbing up and sitting in trees to make their clay models.  Some of the boys were hanging on branches telling me they were a monkey, sloth or snake!  Really acting out our rainforest project.

From the start I have been keen to relate the rainforests to our own Scottish woods as the children are far removed from the rainforests.  Instead of worrying them with tales of cutting down rainforests, we have looked at how important woods are and celebrated our own woods, with minibeast hunts, tree identification walks, leaf collecting, exploring our woods and now using our woods as a place to sing, do art and for design and technology.  We are finishing this topic in 2 weeks but this wont be the end of our visits here...this resource on our doorsteps is far too valuable.

Plans are for some free play sessions, spooky (halloween) trail, firework pictures (using leaves and twigs), reading Burn's poems in the woods  and lots more...come back soon to find out...

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