Chiddingly Primary School

01825 872307 | Muddles Green, Chiddingly, Lewes, East Sussex, BN8 6HN
| All enquiries to Carly Dann
Alan Brundle - Chair of Governors - abrundle@pioneerfederation.co.uk
Clerk to the Governors - clerk@pioneerfederation.co.uk

On this page you can read our Forest School updates in blog format.

Click here for our Introduction

Forest School Update 1st April

In Forest School this week the children did all things Easter! The children did an Easter egg hunt and then an egg and spoon race. They each had a little chocolate egg each. Such a great afternoon!

Forest School Update 26th March

In Forest School this week the children experimented with water bottles! They cut them in half and put a dish cloth material over the end which was cut. Then they dipped it in water and washing up liquid to make bubbles! They had lots of fun chasing the bubbles! The children had toasted marshmallows and toast with lots of different toppings! Chloe Hewitt in Beech said ‘Best Forest School ever with marshmal-lows and toast!’ The children where also really helpful with moving some tadpoles from a small tank into a bigger tank. They found rocks and logs and scooped water out from the small pond for the bigger tank. They then spent lots of time observing the tadpoles and seeing it they had legs which would mean they had turned into froglets! They also spent some time digging for treasure! A great Forest School after-noon all round!

Forest School Update 19th March

Forest School was so much fun this week! Oak and Beech Class did some pond dipping to try and find newts. They found lots of frog spawn! They also did some bug hunting, which mostly found worms. Some of the children are really brave at handling worms! The children also did some den building and built a huge spider web which they had fun crawling over and underneath! The children did some bark rubbings and also drew on the bark using chalk. They dud in the mud and also climbed trees! A fire was built and the children were able to enjoy some smores to finish off the session!

Forest School Update 12th March

Oak and Beech were very excited about their Forest School session this week. The started off their session becoming the wind and leaves whilst moving around the field… it was a very windy afternoon! Then they took part in a Forest School style relay race! When they went into the hall they had a look at some frog and toad spawn and made life cycles, used clay and branches to make sculptures and even minibeasts!

Forest School Update 11th December

This was the last forest school of the term before Christmas. Willow enjoyed the treasure hunt around the fields! They had to search for clues which then led them to other clues and a prize of Haribo sweets at the end!

They also enjoyed creating and making Christmas crafts using twigs, cardboard and string. They made bunches using Christmas tree, Holly and Ivy, wrapped with a ribbon. They looked great!

The children then finished of the garden area as a big group and it looks really good!

A big thank you to Archie P, Jacinda, Skyler, Arthur and Kalian for giving up their lunchtime to make a start on the garden area. They really helped to speed the process along and did a brilliant job! Thank you!

Forest School Update 4th December

Today in forest school we did arts and crafts in the hall as it was dreadful weather!

We got a black piece of card, covered that with glue and created a pattern with string then we put tin foil over it. Then we put our fingers around it to cause a dent showing the pattern. We then used sharpies to colours them in!

We did a picture of trees where we used masking tape then we used water colours to create the background. After that, we pulled off the masking tape to reveal the trees! We painted on leaves with poster paint using green, yellow, red and brown.

Lastly, we could make snowflakes by folding paper and cutting into it.

Written by Owen and Archie P

 

Forest School Update 27th November

This week in Forest School Willow started to get the paths ready for the huge pile of woodchip which was very kindly donated to us by Josh Penrose. The children spent time scraping out the path so it was free of weeds. Archie S did a grand job of revamping the little garden – well done Archie! The children had hot chocolates and toffee apples which they thoroughly enjoyed!

Willow Class also used tools during Forest School to make jigsaws. They cut pieces of wood, drew pictures on them and then cut different shapes out to create a jigsaw!

Forest School Update 20th November

This week Willow absolutely loved Forest School! The children went down to the woods and did some free explor-ing.
They also spent some time making dens and playing ‘dogs out of logs’, where they used logs as dogs and took them for walks! The children also did some climbing and playing in the wood.

They were set a challenge to build a bridges with the volunteers and staff in groups. They had to be able to bal-ance a bottle or a log on the bridge, be able to move underneath it and also had to be able to sit on the bridge. All the groups succeeded and had a brilliant time!

Forest School Update 13th November

This week Willow thoroughly enjoyed Forest School! We were on the school site today enjoying a huge variety of activities! From gardening and crafts to building dens and toasting marsh mellows on the fire!

The children explored the wide variety of leaves that can be found on the school playing field. They collected as many different leaves as they could from different varieties of trees – they found loads! This highlighted how many different types of trees they can find in your local area (linking brilliantly to our topic!). Later they used leaves to create some beautiful, colourful art pieces! Some children helped to lovingly plant bulbs in the nature garden, ready for spring! Children also had the opportunity to go on a bug hunt – even a newt was found! They made impressive, well thought through dens and toasted marsh mellows on the fire!

Forest School Update 23rd October

This week the children were really lucky and treated to a treasure hunt! Clues had to be followed which ultimately led to a prize for each child! The children made pizzas and roasted smores over the fire. They also had some free play and exploring time, which involved making dens and climbing trees.

We have had a really successful first term of Forest School and we think the children have thoroughly enjoyed themselves!

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our volunteers who have helped with Forest School and Miss Waterman for running them!

Forest School Update 16th October

The weather was much better this week which we were really pleased about! In this weeks forest school we focused on wellbeing. This meant a lot of our activities were linked to being calm and reflecting. We finished our clay leaf prints which we painted with sponges and acrylic paint. We made dream catchers using hazel twigs, feather and leaves. They look amazing! We did some gardening and free exploring. We also did spent some time quietly to reflect and think about wellbeing day.

Forest School Update 9th October

In Thursdays session we did lots of craft making; leaf printing in clay, turned them into a bowl shape for putting keys, money or any small bits and bobs.

We also did some art using string and white paint and this gave everyone different pictures.

The children made clay garden cane tops and made various animals; snakes, snails, dogs, tortoise’s and bugs.

The children also had free exploring play in the top field and played team games.

Forest School Update 2nd October

This week we were lucky with the weather and Sycamore had a great day exploring. Some made dens using ropes, tarps and long branches. Then some boys decided to make a rope swing and a zip line which they had great time on. We had the slack line up for children, they had to work as a team to get across it. They also did leaf printing and willow weaving making hearts.

Last of all the children made toffee apples cooked over the fire, then dipped in sugar and then heated to make the sugar turn to brown. Then they had to wait for the toffee to harden and to cool. The children loved it and of course we had smores too!

A big thank you to the volunteers who helped this week at Forest School.

Forest School Update 18th September

Sycamore enjoyed their first Forest School of the year yesterday and were improving the grounds of the school: digging, cutting, planting and weeding. They were rewarded with marshmallows round the fire. Thank you to Miss Waterman and her team of amazing helpers for this opportunity!

 

Forest School Update 13th March

This week in Forest School, the woodland was very wet and windy so unfortunately Sycamore Class could not venture over there. Instead, Miss Waterman planned lots of brilliant craft activities and they also had an opportunity to take part in team building games! The team building game they played meant they had to be blindfolded and were only able to get instructions from the person who wasn’t blindfolded through hand signals! It meant that they had to trust each other and work as a team to move around!

Forest School Update 6th March

This term, Sycamore Class will be doing Forest School and it was their first session on Wednesday. They have been learning about survival all week and so their Forest School session tied in with this.

The children took part in lots of fun activities, including an assault course where they got extremely wet and muddy, building dens and making smores on the fire.

Forest School Update 14th February

Beech Class painted their clay dinosaurs this week, before going out to the fire to toast marshmallows and drink tea and hot chocolate with cream!

The class have previously been doing experiments with growing seeds in the classroom, so in Forest School they planted their seeds into pots to take home.

Later, they had free exploration, built dens, made some bark rubbings and did free drawings of trees.

What Beech Class Thought of Forest School

“Forest School was fun, exciting and amazing. It made Wednesdays way better.” Luna

“I liked that we got to choose different activities and ones that we’ve never done before!” Amelie

“I liked making the dens, making the sticks for marshmallows and cooking them on the fire!” Ethan

“I enjoyed everything but I didn’t like when my camp came down!” Poppy

“The whittling the sticks and roasting marshmallows was good.” Lucas

“Painting the dinosaurs was cool!” Rebecca

“I liked playing in the fort.” Elijah T

Forest School Update 7th February

This week in Forest School, Beech Class made pancakes on the fire! They also made dinosaurs out of clay, did some free play and den building, made swamp lands for the dinosaurs and did a bit of investigating amongst the fallen leaves and twigs (they tried to figure out what trees we have near our field). A big thank you to Miss Waterman for providing such lovely activities again!

Forest School Update 31st January

Beech Class were extremely busy in Forest School this week! They made ‘dinosaur lands’ with mud for the swamps, twigs as the trees, conkers for the pathways, streams using foil and bark as the caves. They also did some whittling with sticks (in order to toast marshmallows), built dens, had free exploration, went minibeast hunting (they found some newts) AND made fat balls for the birds! Such a busy but fun session!

Also, thank you to Emily and Ed Gingell for donating the logs for seats!

Forest School Update 24th January

This Wednesday, Beech Class had a lovely wet and muddy trip down to the woods for Forest School. They pretended to be dinosaurs, stomping through the swamps! It was great fun! They then had time to have free exploration play.

A little bit later, they played a game where the carnivorous dinosaurs ‘hunted’ the herbivores, in other words they played ‘hide and seek’. They then made the skeletons of a T-rex and a brontosaurus using sticks.

A big thank you to Miss Waterman, Katie, Marion and Louise.

Forest School Update 11th October

This week, Willow Class made their very own bows and arrows, like they might have done in the Tudor times! They also made a bug house with sticks, cones, straws, leaves, etc. before tidying up the little pond area in the garden. They then made mud faces and had free exploration time.

Willow Class ended the session with some smores and hot chocolate by the fire. It was a lovely but windy day, so Miss Waterman had a bit of trouble lighting the fire initially!

A big thank you to Miss Waterman for all her planning and all the volunteers again for their help and support.

Forest School Update 4th October

This week, Willow Class used their cooking skills in Forest School. They made bread from scratch and cooked it on the fire. They even made the skewers that they used for this! They also picked some apples, peeled and chopped them, then added sugar to make toffee apples!

After this, they did some free exploration, made paint brushes, printed leaves, built dens, walked on the slack line and did some whittling (using various tools to do so).

A big thank you to Sienna’s mum, Callum’s dad, Mrs Champion and Mrs Thompson for help this week!

Forest School Update 18th October

This week, Willow Class did various team building games and exercises in the woodland. The first game they played, they had to balance bamboo sticks on their fingers in groups and gradually lower it down to the floor. It was quite tricky but they managed to do it!

The next game they played, they worked in pairs. One child was blindfolded and the other was their ‘protector’. Mrs Champion made a noise and the blindfolded child had to move towards the sound. The ‘protector’ had to make sure their partner was safe from tripping or bumping into anything!

The children then had free exploration. Some children did role playing, some built dens and others went bug hunting and made bug ‘hotels’.

The last activity of the day was a group team building task again. In groups, children had to work together to build secure and safe nests. Miss Waterman tested the nests by dropping an egg into it. All the nest were brilliantly made as none of eggs broke!

The whole class worked so well together!

Forest School Update 27th September

Willow Class braved the wet weather this week and took a trip to the woods for Forest School. They played conkers, made patterns with various materials that they could find in the woods, built dens and made some crowns using twigs, bracken and leaves. They were making themselves into Tudor queens and kings!

A thank you to Becca, Marion, Katie, Louise and Mrs Thompson for helping out!

 

Forest School Update 20th September

This week, Willow Class had their first Forest School session of the term. They spent the first part of it foraging in the woods trying to see what they can find at this time of the year. They found: hazelnuts, sweet chestnuts, blackberries, mushrooms and acorns. They could not find any conkers so decided it must be too early in the year! This linked with their learning about the Tudors, as they discussed what the Tudors would have found and what they would have used all these things for e.g. to dye their clothes perhaps! They will be using some of these items to make art next week. They then spent the rest of the time free to explore the woods and play!

Thank you to Miss Waterman and all the volunteers for a brilliant start to Forest School this year!

Forest School Update 21st June

It was the last session of Forest School this week and Year R and 1 had a brilliant time! They were painting using nature, drawing pictures, creating grass/leaf patterns, playing with slime/sand, making artwork on the trees using mud as glue, playing in the puddles, climbing trees and having a water relay race! A big thank you to Miss Waterman for her fantastic Forest School lessons this academic year. The children have learnt so much and we look forward to what she has planned next year!

Forest School Update 14th June

This week in Forest School, Reception and Year 1 had a ‘messy’ session outside! They took part in different sensory play activities and games, including playing with slime, muddy puddles and wet sand! They used the wet sand to build some very creative things.

Miss Waterman also set them up with a task of getting water balloons from one end to another by throwing and catching them! Fun was had by all and a big thank you to the volunteers Katie, Sam and Louise, as they didn’t mind getting wet and muddy!

Forest School Update 7th June

On Wednesday, Reception and Year 1 had a Forest School session together to get to know each other better and to help Reception Class with their transition into Beech Class next year. They started off in a circle and played ‘get to know each other’ games. Reception then paired up with a Year 1 buddy and went exploring in the woods.

They also built a bridge, built dens and played hide and seek! Lots of fun was had by all. They are now looking forward to 3 more sessions of Forest School together this term.

A big thank you to all the helpers and Miss Waterman for planning another great session!

Forest School Update 22nd May

Oak Class went on a scavenger hunt, finding lots of different things in the woods from their list e.g. pine cones, flowers, etc. They were told to think about what they could hear, see and feel and got to explore different things in the woodland e.g. the moss and bark. They were then able to explore the woods how they wanted to and decided to build dens and do some explorative digging! Skooter said, ‘My favourite bit was the see-saw and taking it in turns!’ Jesse said, ‘I enjoyed make a big den!’

Forest School Update 17th May

This Wednesday, Oak Class did so many different activities! They were shown how to light the fire using flints and how to put it out again with water. Before they put the fire out though, they got to have a tasty treat and toasted some marshmallows!

After this, they did some mud painting, tree bark rubbing, pond dipping (they found all kinds of bugs!), tree climbing AND they played sleeping lions and tried to listen to what sounds were in the forest. What a brilliant fun-filled session!

A massive thank you to Miss Waterman, Sam Hinder, Katie Samson, Louise Champion and Jesse’s gran.

Forest School Update 8th May

On Wednesday 8th May, Oak Class had Forest School inside, to start with, because the weather was very wet! They made stick crowns, painted pebbles and made jewellery by using the hand drill! They then went outside to play some games, once the weather had brightened up. They played the ‘Bat and Moth’ game again, as it is a favourite!

A big thank you to Mrs Robins, Mrs Champion and Mrs Hinder for helping out!

Forest School Update 3rd May

On Wednesday 1st May, Oak Class had their first Forest School session! They had such a brilliant time exploring and playing in the woods. They spent the afternoon hunting for different kinds of bugs and mini-beasts!

Whilst in the woods, they played ‘Bat and Moth’. One person was blindfolded and acted as the bat. Whilst being surrounded by the ‘trees’ they had to use their hearing to listen out really carefully and ‘catch’ the moth!

The children also made bug artwork out of different woodland materials e.g. leaves and sticks.

Thank you Miss Waterman for a lovely afternoon!

Forest School Update 5th April

In Forest School this week, Willow Class made sculptures, using materials in the woodland.

Verity made a 3D picture of a bird’s nest. Some other children made a sculpture of the den, whilst Jack, Neo, Sebastian and William made a fantastic structure which can be seen below.

Willow Class have had a brilliant term of Forest School sessions. A big thank you to Miss Waterman and all the volunteers.

Forest School Update 29th March

This week, Willow Class were using their Detective Find-It learning powers effectively in Forest School. They started the session off by pond dipping and found great crested newts, snails, other newts and even dragon fly larvae! They then went onto measure the heights of trees using various different methods. They also tried to work out how old the trees were by counting how many hands they could get around the tree (using the same hand each time!) and then measuring their hands and calculating the circumference from this.

Later on, they were allowed ‘free play’ and took part in various activities, including den building and mud painting.

Yet again, thank you to Miss Waterman for leading an excellent session!

Forest School Update 22nd March

Willow Class took part in another fantastic Forest School session this week. They learnt how to build and light a fire, built camps with tarpaulin, made muddy faces on the trees, did whittling with knives, cooked marshmallows and ate smores, walked across the slack line and made nesting stations for the birds by using hazel to make frames, then weaving different materials into them.

Willow Class Forest School

Willow Class had their second Forest School session of the term this week. Unfortunately, the strong wind outside meant they could not go to the woodland, but they had lots of fun taking part in different activities at school instead.

Whilst outside, the children played ‘Bat and Moth’. One person was blindfolded and acted as the bat. Whilst being surrounded by the ‘trees’ they had to use their hearing to listen out really carefully and ‘catch’ the moth!

Willow Class also played other teambuilding games in the hall: working together to balance balls between two sticks, using the parachute to work together and taking part in an assault course.

Willow Class Forest School

Willow Class had their first Forest School session of the term. They went to the woodland and discussed comparisons between a woodland and a rain forest. They also built dens with all kinds of natural materials, whilst discussing what the woodland can provide, e.g. shelter, water, etc.

Owl Visits Sycamore

On Wednesday, Sycamore class had their last Forest School session of the term. They had some exciting visitors in this week. Graeme Ward very kindly arranged for Owen from Knockhatch to visit them with an owl. The children got to hold the owl and also have a go at dissecting owl pellets!

George S said, “It was fun yesterday. We were finding parts of bones in the owl pellets and finding out what the owls eat. We then all gathered around the hall and a staff member from Knockhatch came in with a white owl named Gandalf and we all got to hold him.”

Oli said, “It was lots of fun and it wasn’t as heavy as I thought it would be.”

A big thank you to Stanley and Skooter’s dad and also Owen from Knockhatch for bringing the owl and pellets in!

Structure in the Forest

On Wednesday 30th January, Sycamore Class had the challenge to make a structure in the forest: a den, bed, chair, bridge or table.

They used natural resources and used rope to the tie knots to keep the structures together.

They used excellent team work skills and their growth mindset by not giving up.

Sycamore Forest School

On Wednesday 23rd January, Sycamore Class had another excellent Forest School afternoon. They did a wide variety of activities of their choice: making dens, throwing spears, making chocolate cake in oranges, building a fire and toasting bread and marshmallows, charcoal drawings on trees, making bow and arrows and much more! They worked so hard as a team to do these things and used their Inspector Ingenious skills to make some really creative things!

Sycamore Forest School

On Wednesday 16th January, Sycamore class had their first Forest School session of the term. They spent the afternoon exploring the forest, taking lots of photos from different perspectives, playing hide and seek and making different structures e.g. dens, bridges, etc.

Building a Fire

On Wednesday 5th December, Beech class had Forest School outside as the rain managed to hold off. They worked really hard to build a fire together and also had the opportunity to use the saws with Miss Waterman.

Forest School Indoors!

On Wednesday 28th November, Beech Class had Forest School indoors due to the weather conditions. They had a great time playing lots of team building games. In one game they worked in pairs to balance balls between two sticks. They had to work hard together to ensure they did it quickly but not too quickly that they dropped the ball. They also played a game where they linked hands in a line and had to get the hoop from one end of the line to the other, without breaking hold. Everyone worked really hard and worked well together. Excellent team work!

Dens, Bug Hunting & Twig Art

This week, Beech class made dens for animals and walked ‘pet logs’ to make trails in the leaves. Some children also went bug hunting with their magnifying pots. The class had great fun making some art with twigs and weaving natural materials between string. Last of all, the children made a big den and the aim was to fit everyone in, which they managed to achieve!