Fun, fresh air and laughter….and a bit of risky play: This is what keeps bringing children back to “Wacky Woods” time and time again. Barely a year after offering their first school holiday programme, Wacky Woods regularly offers fun, inspirational outdoor woodland activities during every school holiday; at its regular Saturday morning club and through its increasingly popular birthday parties for children of all ages.
Wacky Woods is part of Schola Foris, the Forest School provider based near Macclesfield and run by Alexandra Douglas-Kane, a trained Forest School leader. Schola Foris works with schools and home educators on long term educational projects developing self confidence, improving social, physical and communications skills as well as providing environmental learning experiences with practical skills . It is very much about letting the children take the lead in their learning.
“Wacky Woods is based on our Forest School ethos in that children take the lead in their outdoor play. It offers children the chance to get outside, have fun, let off steam, make new friends and engage with the natural environment” says Alex. “It’s a perfect antidote to what is commonly being referred to as “Nature Deficit Disorder”. At Wacky Woods, we build dens, whittle, have nature trails, cook on campfires, climb trees, and laugh a lot.”
The “risky play” element of what Wacky Woods does, allows children to judge and manage the risks involved in playing in the woods, much in the same way many parents did as youngsters – before the distractions of computer games and other media enticed children away from outdoor play, and before parental fears for child safety limited that freedom enjoyed by earlier generations.
Wacky Woods has the advantage of qualified leaders trained in Play, Risk Management, Adventure Activities as well as First Aid so that parents can be assured that their children can have maximum fun with minimal risk.
An enthusiastic parent shares her experience: “Wacky Woods was recommended to me by a friend and my 6 year old son loved it from the minute he set foot in the woods. He loves being outdoors and taking part in all the activities on offer, particularly helping to build the camp fire and whittling wood. He comes home from each session covered in mud and extremely happy! Alex and her team strike a perfect balance between teaching the children about safety but at the same time giving them the freedom they really need. I would thoroughly recommend Wacky Woods to anyone with children, boys and girls alike.”
And a child’s view? “It’s excellent because you have a campfire lunch if you stay over dinner. I really enjoyed tracking through the woods and making trails, the homemade rope swing and pond dipping”.
Wacky Woods Summer programme will run from Monday 23rd July to Friday 31st August primarily for children from 6-12 years. Children can opt for single morning or afternoon sessions, or stay all day with a campfire lunch…. and then they’ll ask you if they “can come back tomorrow, please”.