With the blackthorn blossom emerging and the willow blooming in the trees, today we welcomed back our group of parents and children. The sun shone for us, providing gorgeous dappled shade in the woodland. Along with catching up around the fire, we had a go at dying some eggs. Finding leaves to place against the eggshells, we wrapped them in old tights and dyed them in turmeric and beetroot over the heat of the fire. Others shared family traditions of wrapping eggs in layers of onion skins to create beautiful textured patterns, and then how they gifted them to friends and families as part of their easter celebrations.
The children all took different things from this activity; some loving the stirring of the dye on the fire, some talking about birds in the eggs, some enjoying the sensation of cracking and peeling eggs, and some talking about how the peeled eggs were like 'jelly'.
We also played some games with the parachute, painted some wood with the dye and pottered around the woodland exploring and then shared tea and drinks around our peaceful woodland circle in the sunshine, renewing connections and making new ones.
After school the group continued with spotting signs of spring and animals and birds along the way to the woodland. They talked of how the fungi was a feature of the forest floor after spotting some growing on a rotting log. Linking this to their recent learning at school about the differing layers in a forest. It was so brilliant to witness them identifying, exploring and confirming knowledge in their real life environment. They extended the painting from earlier in the day and then wanted to have a go at practising using the tools to saw, drill and hammer pieces of wood.
We found a nest carefully constructed in one of our hanging ropes and talked about what kind of animal might create the nest and just how skilfully it was created. Before leaving the children whispered a word along their line about what they had seen in the woodland today.
We are so grateful to be back in the woods building our community and making connections of all sorts. And the warm sunshine was a bonus!