Bringing the outdoors in.

Firstly apologies for blog neglect, we have been so busy lately with a whole heap of adventures. My camera roll on my phone is full and my head is swirling with blog adventures to share!
With the school holidays in full swing and my work contract drawing to an end…let the fun begin!

We are incredibly lucky to live near to a fantastic nature reserve Wicken fen and are quite regular visitors. We are national trust members, mostly so we always have somewhere to take the children without paying for every occasion.
The fen itself can be accessed without payment, but obviously paying visitors greatly support this fantastic wild space! The Fen (As do many trust properties.) offer regular activity sessions, we have several booked for the coming months and will be shared as we do them. Our first for the holidays was Summertime arts and crafts.

The session was held in the education centre on the site. We had a cool, large space to work in and loads of scavenged, natural materials from the fens to create with. There was even picturesque cattle grazing just outside the door on a lovely hot day.

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The activity stations were well prepared and each manned by a member of NT staff explaining the activities and helping out the children as needed. The first activity my team chose to complete was mask making, they were provided with cardboard face shapes and a whole range of natural, inspiring materials.

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Next they had a go at making clay people with clay obviously, sticks and fen reeds. The children had a great, messy time making their people which turned out looking a little like rustic voodoo dolls I must admit! šŸ˜‰
Next was my favourite activity, wall hangings. Some saint had spent considerable time attaching sheets of cotton to sticks and raffia which the children then got to decorate using paint and a selection of leaf templates.
These are all hanging up around the house and look beautiful, truly treasured creations!

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Our final activity was natural mobiles, the children decorating willow hoops with a selection of disks they decorated made from a variety of materials. As part of the process they got to laminate petals from windflowers which they loved. I have a habit of breaking laminators as all the Childcare settings I have worked in can vouch for, so I kept well away from this process. šŸ˜‰

Altogether the session lasted 2 hours, we weren’t pressured to finish and leave in any way. We left with armfuls of creations! The session cost Ā£4.75 for each child and for the time they spent there and the quality of the creations they produced (All are proudly displayed around the house!) was good value for money. You don’t need membership to book activities and it is not necessary to pay entry fees for the property either.

A great creative experience for the children, who were really inspired by the selection of natural materials. A welcome break from the blistering heat of the day. We did of course manage a little explore of the site before we went home for the day.

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