After school club
We were very excited at the start of term 5 to return to almost normal routine at after school club. We were thrilled to welcome the children back to The Hideaway and start to enjoy exploring spring time and all the new growth and wildlife that awakens at this time.
We have grown in size slightly and now have a waiting list for two of our three days. We have a maximum of 24 children, 12 from each school, and we pride ourselves with having a low ratio of 1 adult to 6 children. We believe this is important to help develop relationships and to support 'risky' play such as tree climbing, stick play and tool use.
During each session we have the same favourite activities to explore including the mud kitchen, tree swings, obstacle courses, digging, tree climbing and den building but we also have a planned themed activity each session. At snack time we chat about what the children have enjoyed and if there is anything they would like to try. We also observe the children's interests and speak with their teachers in school so we can plan activities and resources that build upon the children's learning. We have a new planning format which we complete with the children. Do let us know if your child has any ideas they would like to explore further at forest school.
We started the term making giant nests and bird feeders when learning about how the birds make their nests. With play leaders Sarah artistic creativity we have enjoyed creating nature collages, weaving and nature mandalas. We had many tadpoles in term 5 which we observed and created our own mini ponds and made frogs. We have really enjoyed using large branches and loose parts to create dens and we had a pirate themed week where the children built their own pirate ship and created a fortress to keep out the pirates! We of course had a VERY wet May where the children enjoyed some serious mud play, creating mud pies, jumping in puddles and collecting rain water. Lastly of course we have had many activities related to the invertebrates and other insects that we find around our site. We have found and made our own bees, ladybirds, butterflies, worms, caterpillars etc as well as renovating our bug hotel.
We also enjoy showing children how to work around fire safely and have a healthy respect for fire, so with this in mind we have created the role of ‘fire assistant’ with the children where at least two children help one member of staff with the fire. This involves collecting small sticks and preparing the fire with supervision. This has been very successful and enjoyed by all.
What we plan to do in term 6
Term 6 brings better weather so we introduce water play to help keep us cool. We will also be playing with sunlight and shadow shapes. We are going to work together to re-line the pond which has developed a leak. We are going to learn to whittle safely and create stick people to play with. We are going to look at leaf shapes and id and create labels for our trees and vegetation around the site.
The staff at the Hideaway are all experienced Forest school or play leaders and childcare practitioners who LOVE to work and have fun outdoors in all seasons. Each newsletter we will be shining the 'spotlight' on one of the members of our team so we can share a little bit more about us:
Bryony is our after school club leader. She is a level 3 forest school leader and also a nanny. Bryony grew up in Kenya where she recalls spending hours in her garden den making, foraging and climbing trees. Bryony regularly spends her time outdoors and still today enjoys creating mini 'fairy' houses to see who may visit her garden or habitat.
Bryony says "I want to use my love and passion for nature to help encourage the younger generation to reconnect with nature; through play and exploring their natural surroundings, because to me there is nothing more magical then playing under trees in dappled sunlight and exploring the undergrowth for bugs!"
Bryony is our after school club team leader and designated safeguarding lead alongside Vicki. Bryony is responsible for all after school club themed planning so do let her know if you have a specific interest or activity you would like to try.
Please let us know on 07895 407542 if your child won’t be attending After School Club. Where possible please leave day to day messages on this phone number, rather than by emailing Vicki who may not pick up your message in time.
There is a 48-hour exclusion period for children (and staff) after the LAST episode of sickness or diarrhea. We have your children and our staff’s best interests at heart by enforcing these exclusion periods. By bringing your poorly child in you are putting other children (and our staff) at risk. Thank you for your support.
Please also remember that if anyone in your household is awaiting results of a Covid test or have symptoms please do not attend until test results have returned or exclusion period has passed.
You Said, We Did!
Each newsletter we will share with you how we have responded to feedback from either an adult or a child. Your feedback is very important to us, and we welcome your comments.
You Said: “Can we do some planting"
We Did: We have planted some wild flower mix around the site, we have sectioned of an area of grass to create a meadow habitat and we have planted some small native trees around the perimeter of our site.
THANK YOU for your continued support.
If you don’t already, please follow us on Facebook and/or Instagram. We post lots of useful information, such as when we open for bookings, any last-minute places that are available in Holiday Club, as well as lots of photos of the children playing.
We would also appreciate any reviews or tags, thank you!
Spread the word!
Please can you share your experiences about The Hideaway after school club with friends and families. You can attend 1, 2 or 3 days a week and we now have the flexibility for ad hoc days of childcare. Do get in touch at the email@example.com or book via our webpage https://www.hideawayforest.com/hideawayafterschoolclub
We would like to thank families who have given us a donation to help complete activities with the children. This funding has helped us buy planters that allow plants to grow up the way and have a lift flap so we can look at what grows down the way and study the root structure and hopefully potatoes soon.
This is a reminder that all invoices for term 1 and 2 of the next academic year starting in September will be issued on week beginning 26th July. This then gives you the opportunity to let us know if you are continuing to attend in September or not. Please note our policy is we need two weeks notice of the current term if not continuing next term.
Collection procedure and parking
As of immediate effect we will be stopping our one way system when collecting your children. We will no longer be using the rear padlocked gate. We therefore request that you wear your mask to walk up the entrance lane and kindly give way to each other if someone is coming the other way.
To access the rear entrance to the site we have to walk through 'Pinefields' carpark. This is a private car park for the residents of the flats and they are no longer giving us consent to use this as a right of way. I understand that for families who use bikes this may be a problem. We are working with the scouts to open up the area at the top of the steps for parking bikes etc but this will not happen immediately. We therefore request that if you wish to bring your bike that you bring it inside the rear gate to collect your child. Only bike users are now permitted to use the rear entrance, padlocked gate.
Can we please remind car users that this is a private car park and you should not enter this car park at any point. Using this as a carpark puts our group at risk of using the Henleaze site so please park considerately on surrounding streets only.
We try to re-use and recycle as much as possible when planning activities, you can help us with items we use regularly. If you are having a 'spring clean' and have any of the items listed below then please hand to a leader on collection, thank you.
Items needed - toilet role/ kitchen role tubes, glass jam jars, any unloved woodland cuddly animals, felt tip pens and crayons, small single plant pots.