FOUNDATION STAGE FSGB SUMMER 2015 at Stannington Infant School
"A friendly, creative, environment for learning together"
Stannington Infant School
Stannington Road, Sheffield S6 6AN
0114 234 4401

FOUNDATION STAGE FSGB SUMMER 2015

FSGB Forest School Blog - Week 1 – The Garden

To start our morning we sat on the decking and talked about the Forest School Rules and the Gruffalo story we have been reading. Then we had our first activities – all to help us identify the SENSES! We looked for coloured cubes on the school field –SIGH. Sat at different places in school and listened to all the sounds we could hear- HEARING. Then finally we went on a scavenger hunt around the garden to find a list of different things. Something colourful, smooth, that smells nice…. SMELL, TOUCH and SIGHT! We soon worked out the only sense we hadn’t used was…..TASTE!!!

To end our morning we used our senses of sight, touch and hearing to make a character out of clay from The Gruffalo – we even decorated them using natural materials.

In the afternoon we had some different activities to do – but we were always thinking about the different senses we were using…..

Planting – we all planted a seed and talked about what we have to do to look after it over the next few weeks.

Den building – we made dens for our Gruffalo characters to live in.

Art – as a class we all took part in creating a large scale picture based on the work of Andy Goldsworthy……Can you see what we decided to do?

To end our day we sat back on the decking and sang some bug songs before reading the story The Snail and the Whale. What a bust start to Forest Schools!

FSGB Forest School Blog - Week 2 – The Garden

To start our morning we sat on the decking and sang the bug song that we have been learning – we all remembered the line ‘Don’t go sitting down on them you’ll get them in your pants’…..Ants get EVERYWHERE! Then we had our first activity – to help us remember the SENSES work from week 1. Florrie, the Garden Elf, asked us to look for items in the garden to help her make some magic potions to look after the sick animals. We found all the things she needed and then Florrie added some magic elf dust and water and the magic potions were made! Brody thought their potion smelt of play dough and Millie thought theirs smelt of Battenberg!

Then we worked in our Gruffalo groups to make fruit kebabs (thank you Katherine and Mrs Gillott), learn the safety skills to whittle sticks (thank you Barry and Mrs Simpson) or build a den for Florrie (thank you Neville) to look after the animals.

In the afternoon we had some different activities to do – but we were always thinking about the different senses we were using…..

Gardening – some of us worked with Barry and Neville, using the wheelbarrows and digging out the weeds in the garden.

Some of us worked with Nick (Thank you Nick) – bug hunting or making ‘natural art pictures’ using things we had found in the garden or on the field (Thank you Charlotte).

And some of us tried making a video diary with the i-pads – a bit of work still needed here – but we are getting there!

To end our day we sat back on the decking and ate our fruit kebabs – at last we were using our sense of TASTE! They tasted YUMMY!

FSGB Forest School Blog - Week 3 – The Garden

The morning began with a sing-song on the decking – our Forest School song is coming along nicely – and then we read the story of The Hungry Caterpillar. Rafi was a great help to Mrs Barker as he acted out the story for everyone! We then looked at some words we would be thinking about: MINIBEASTS, CHANGES, DIFFERENCES, HABITATS, SIMILARITIES and ENVIRONMENT.

Our first challenge was to go on a mini-beast hunt. Each group was given 2 different areas to look at around school – the carpark or the field; the playground or the garden; the trim trail area or outside the dining hall. By the end (and the fact that we did not find any mini-beasts in the areas where there were no trees of soil) we all realised that the mini-beasts prefer habitats with leaves, soil and flowers, ‘so they can live’. (Isobel)

During the morning we all had a go at learning to use the bow saw – Mrs Simpson told us the rules and then Barry and Neville helped us each cut some pieces of wood. We all got to decorate them – the pieces of wood that is, not Barry and Neville!

Mrs Shirling came to help Mrs Gillott, Jaime and Katherine teach us how to make butter. We used milk and cream and had to shake containers until the liquid changed to butter. It took a long time but we managed it! We also built dens for our groups with Heather and Nick. This time we all knew they had to bigger as we needed to fit five of us inside! We all worked well in our teams and some of us even put logs inside to sit on.

To end our morning session we played, ‘Ants, Ants, Ants’’ – ask me what we had to do! We all decided that it is hard work being an ant!

In the afternoon we had the opportunity of:

Gardening - we planted some more seeds and dug up some weeds.

Art – we made pictures from natural materials that we found on the school field.

Making a video of our activities using the i-pads. Thank you Charlotte as you managed to actually get a group to record with their pictures – the first time this has happened!

All of us had a chance to make garlic butter with Mrs Gillott and to finish our day we sat on the decking and ate it. What a great end to another busy Forest School day!

FSGB Forest School Blog - Week 4 – The Farm!

Wow – what an amazing sunny morning for our walk to the farm! On our way we stopped at the top of Spoon Lane and then by the bridge over the river to look at the environment and use our senses. What could we see? Hear? Smell? Lots of us could see the yellow fields and houses from the top of Spoon Lane, ‘I can see the world!’ (Lily) and some of us heard cars and an aeroplane – one group even heard Mrs Barker! We could all smell the grass. By the bridge we heard birds and the water and lots of us saw the chopped down trees. ‘I can hear the waves of water.’ (Jacob M). The adults loved hearing what we said!

When we arrived at the farm Mrs Simpson was waiting for us - she had arrived there early to get things ready for us. Rafi said ‘I can smell the fire,’ and soon we could all see it too! We went and sat round it to have our snack and listen to the rules we needed to follow to keep safe. Mrs Barker read us a story – Miss Spider’s Tea Party – and we had to try and remember the mini-beasts Miss Spider meets! Then it was into our groups and we found out the different challenges that we would be doing over the next two weeks…

Bug – hunting with Nick and Katherine.

Would we find different mini-beasts to the ones we found in the school garden? Could we find some of the bugs that were in the story about Miss Spider? What different environments could we look in? Owl and Gruffalo groups had a go this week. ‘We’ve found a ginormous spider.’ (Alex) ‘Can you lift this rock…it’s heavy…Oooh! Lots of ants!’ (Millie) We did manage to find lots more mini-beasts than we had at school!

Whittling with Mrs Gillott, Barry and Neville .

Snake, Squirrel , Mouse and Fox group all had a go at this and all of them remembered the safety rules that they had learnt at school. Sophie T made the stick with the best point…perhaps she was encouraged by the fact that she knew the sticks were going to be used to toast marshmallows on the fire!

Art based on the work of Jackson Pollock - Heather Shelley and Charlotte.

Owl and Squirrel groups worked on this. They chose the image that they liked the most by Jackson Pollock and then tried to copy it using natural materials to make their paints. There was ‘paint’ made from dandelions, soil, carrots and bluebells which we mixed with water. Some children mixed lots of different things together! ‘I’ve got carrots mixed with some flowers and a bit of fluff!’ (Brody) Then it was the fun bit……splashing their paints onto the ‘canvas’!!!

Den Building with Brody’s granddad and Ben’s dad.

This week we had to build a den that could shelter our group and the adults! Mouse and Snake groups completed this challenge. Luckily there were lots of large sticks and bits of tree for us to use and we remembered how to move them safely. ’It’s a secret den.’ (Elliot) ‘With a secret door!’ (Caitlyn)The grown-ups said how well we all worked as a team and yes, we did all manage to fit in!

Making a video diary with Suzanne.

Gruffalo and Owl groups had a chance to do this. They enjoyed taking photos of the other children doing their activities and then talking about it.

Before we set off on the walk home, all of us had a chance to toast marshmallows by the fire – we all know how to kneel safely around it – and eat them. Finally we said goodbye to Mrs Simpson and set off on the walk back to school……in the rain! Mrs Barker was very proud of us all as we behaved brilliantly throughout the day and on both walks – even though it was quite far for our little legs!

FSGB Forest School Blog – Week 5 – Our final session at the Farm!

Wow – another amazing sunny morning for our walk to the farm! On our way we stopped at the lane by the houses in Storrs and then in the field by the farm to look at the environment and use our senses to say what we could SEE, HEAR and SMELL. What could we see? Hear? Smell? Lots of us could hear the grass being cut and see the houses. Some of us heard cars and a tractor or could see the wall and its moss! We could all smell the grass as it was being cut nearby. In the field we heard birds and the grass blowing in the wind… ‘I can see the clouds’…lots of children talked about the clouds and what they could see! ‘I can see a dragon…’ Some children talked about the bear hunt, ‘Swishy, swashy grass. We can’t go over it, we can’t go under it, we’ve got to go through it…’

When we arrived at the farm Mrs Simpson was waiting for us – once again she had arrived there early to get things ready for us. We went and sat round the fire to have our snack and to recap on the rules we needed to follow to keep safe. Mrs Barker read us a story – Sam’s Sandwich – and we had to try and remember the mini-beasts Sam uses in his sandwich! Then it was into our groups and we found out the different challenges that we would be doing … 

Bug – hunting with Shelley and Heather.

Would we find different mini-beasts to the ones we found in the school garden? Could we find some of the bugs that were in the story about Sam? What different environments could we look in? Squirrel, Snake, Owl and Mouse groups had a go this week. ‘Ants, ants everywhere… a herd of ants!’ (Noah) ‘A bee lives in a cave!’ (Joseph) We did manage to find lots more mini-beasts than we had at school! 

Bow sawing with Mrs Simpson and Barry.

Snake, Squirrel, Owl and Gruffalo group all had a go at this and all of them remembered the safety rules that they had learnt at school. When they were waiting to use the bow saw they all spent time looking at the bluebells and using chalks to draw them.

Art based on the work of Jackson Pollock – Nick, Katherine and Charlotte.

Fox, Gruffalo, Mouse and Snake and groups worked on this. They looked at the image chosen last week and then continued to try and copy it using natural materials to make their paints. There was ‘paint’ made from dandelions, soil, carrots and bluebells which we mixed with water. Some children grated beetroot and then mixed this water- it made a fantastic red colour! ‘I’m making green with dark leaves’ (Lydia). ‘I’ll get some petals and stir,’ (Honey) Then it was the fun bit……splashing their paints onto the ‘canvas’ !!!

Den Building with Victoria.

Once again this week we had to build a den that could fit all our group and the adults! Gruffalo and Fox groups completed this challenge. Luckily there were lots of large sticks and bits of tree for us to use and we remembered how to move them safely. ’I’m making a table… hey, you’re sitting on the food! (Lydia) ‘We can live in here forever!’ (Sophie T).The grown-ups said how well we all worked as a team and yes, we did all manage to fit in!

Making musical instruments with Mrs Gillott.

Gruffalo and Owl, Snake and Mouse groups had a chance to do this. They enjoyed finding natural materials that they could use to make the sounds of the animals from The Gruffalo. ‘You can drop this and it sounds like the fox sneaking up on the mouse!’ (Rafi). ‘It’s a shaker for the owl….it makes a shaky sound!’ (Chloey)

Before we set off on the walk home we all sat round the fire and had some hot chocolate and a crispy cake bun. Finally we said goodbye to Mrs Simpson and set off on the walk back to school……amazingly it was still sunny! Once again Mrs Barker was very proud of us all as we behaved brilliantly throughout the day and on both walks! Well done FSGB!!!

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