Kidz Kabin Nurseries

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Forest School Learning – Boundaries 1

If you go down to the woods today…

 

…You’ll find Kidz Kabin!

 

Linda Symons is the founder and Managing Director of Kidz Kabin and her hands on approach feeds into all areas of how Kidz Kabin works. Linda never stops learning and has been training as a Forest School  leader with the company that brought the Forest School method to the UK. The ethos of the Forest School is:

 

“based on a fundamental respect for children and young people and for their capacity to instigate, test and maintain curiosity in the world around them. It believes in children’s right to play; the right to access the outdoors (and in particular a woodland environment); the right to access risk and the vibrant reality of the natural world; and the right to experience a healthy range of emotions, through all the challenges of social interaction, to build a resilience that will enable continued and creative engagement with their peers and their potential.” You can find out more about the ethos here.

 

So using the outdoors and giving the children freedom to play, Linda took a group of 3-4 year old children to the woods to begin to learn about boundaries.

 

Before we left Fortismere, she explained the word boundary to the children.

 

She explained that boundaries keep us safe and that they let us know where the end of the safe area is. We had one very entertaining moment when we asked:

 

What are we learning about today? It begins with a B…

 

And we got the answer from one child:

 

Bestminster Abbey?!

 

Ah. No. That was last week.

 

Luckily the woods are a short walk away so we made sure that everyone was clear about how we cross the road – stop, look, listen and wait until there are no cars and the teacher says it’s safe to cross.

 

We got into groups of 4 with one adult leading each group and off we went to the woods!

Taking the classroom to the outdoors means that children are able to play more freely and benefit from learning about their natural surroundings. The methods promote independence and self confidence. The can-do attitude that is fostered builds self-esteem and allows freedom of exploration. The play is less structured but maintains a strong focus on the activity and learning important things.

The children were instructed to find sticks sticks that were as long as their arms.

Linda showed them with a demonstration and then asked them to choose their own piece of triangle shaped paper.

We stuck them to the sticks with sellotape and hooray – we had our flags on flagpoles!

We had a quick snack break and then Linda showed everyone how to make our first boundary. She chose an area between the trees that was a clear, open and visible space. She explained to each child that they had to walk away from her with their flag and when they could no longer hear her speaking, they could put the flag down to mark the spot.

 

When the children were walking away, they concentrated a lot on listening to Linda – checking back frequently to make sure they could still see as well as hear her. When Linda thought they had gone far enough, she lowered her voice so they couldn’t hear it any more. Although Linda was in control of the parameters of the activity, by letting the children work out when to stop for themselves, it gave them a feeling of autonomy and ownership over the exercise.

Once all the children had placed their flags around in a circle we looked to see how big our safe area was. It was quite cold outside so we did some fun jumping up and down and running games to get ourselves warm.

We ended on a big hug! We picked up our flags and returned to Kidz Kabin for lunch.

 

Learning about boundaries will be with the same group of children over the next few weeks. Each exercise will build on the previous one and work cumulatively to develop the children’s understanding of the concept of boundaries, what it is to have a safe area and their own confidence in building it.

©2019 Kidz Kabin Pembroke Studios Ltd . Registered Address: Pembroke Studios .
139-141 Pembroke RoadMuswell Hill . London . N10 2JE Company No. 7574367 . Registered in England & Wales