By Carrie Komesch, Educator
Our preschool groups are a mix of students who are new to the land, and students who had experienced our programs previously. Those who were comfortable finding something interesting in the loose parts or natural materials at their disposal were quick to draw others in. There were various different kinds of play that happened over the week (from the very physical to the very still and focused).
We found a groundhog hole (the animal confirmed its current habitation in late August), and some students wanted to put “food” down the its hole. We discouraged this particular action, lest we overload the animal’s home with food not to its liking or in such a way that we impeded its progress in and out of the hole.
HOWEVER, we were totally fine with the alternative the children suggested… Constructing a “grocery store” just adjacent to the hole!
One constant throughout all of the preschool groups was…MUD. Frequently, the play centred on cooking or baking with the mud.
Sometimes, they painted with it.
And there were always students willing to maintain the mud supply by, as these children put it, “adding the ingredients.”
Forest school is a space where students are given the freedom to get dirty if that’s part of their learning process. This is why we all bring extra clothing!