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We have really enjoyed using Christmas as a ‘Spring Board’ for our Woodland School sessions these last couple of weeks.

Reception children chose to take up the challenge of learning a single knot in order to decorate the woodland trees with ribbons. They used a lovely rhyme to help them to remember how to do it.  We were so impressed with the children’s resilience and then their collaboration skills as they helped each other. They also enjoyed making mini leaf wreaths. They have been learning to identify some of the trees in the woodland area and chose to use mostly Hazel, Field Maple and Hawthorn leaves on their mini wreaths. 

This week Reception children thought about the animals that live in our woodland area and how they could wish them a Happy Christmas. Some of their ideas included acorn collecting for the squirrels, bird seed feeders for the birds, leaf piles for the insects and Christmas cards for the animals.

Year One learnt all about reindeer in Woodland School. They learnt that reindeer antlers can be as big as 1.4m in length. We measured this and were surprised to find this is nearly the height of Miss Walker! We also learnt that their antlers can have up to 44 points on them. We used this knowledge when choosing antlers for our reindeer decorations. When making their decorations the children applied their whittling skills, knot tying and wrapping skills and some children chose to learn to use a bow saw too.

Did you know the favourite food of reindeer is lichen? We identified lichen and talked about collecting it for reindeer on Christmas Eve. We also talked about the problems involved with leaving glitter out for reindeer. We discussed edible glitter (used for decorating cakes) as an alternative if we wanted it to reflect in the moonlight and guide the reindeer to our houses. Most of us decided that lichen, grass and maybe a bit of carrot would be the best treat for visiting reindeer at Christmas time.

Year Two have also enjoyed some Christmas Woodland School. They learnt all about the Winter Solstice and thought about the features and events of winter. Some of the children had asked if they could make something for the Christmas tree, so this is what we did. They learnt how to safely use a pin hammer and a palm drill to make these beautiful Christmas stars to hang on the tree at home. The children also worked on their knot skills and were very proud of their creations.