With schools having opened their doors again this week many will be feeling the strain of returning to the structures and routines associated with back to school. Those who were lucky enough to have a summer of roaming the great outdoors, barefoot and carefree, sitting in a classroom again will be a challenge. Those of you who managed to make it to the woods during the summer and tried and tested the many activities I shared need not give up on your woodland adventures. As the seasons turn towards autumn the woods are a magical place to explore, with a whole new landscape on the woodland floor of fallen leaves and the delicious fruits that the trees hold forth. So try to find the time amidst packed lunches, homework and busy schedules juggling swimming with gymnastics and piano lessons to keep visiting your local woodland and reap all that this wondrous playground has to offer.
The woodland is our playground, there are trees for climbing, branches from which we can swing and often rocks or trunks of fallen trees down which we can slide. Why not create your very own playground for the creatures that live in the woods, be as creative and inventive as you can: maybe a climbing frame for a squirrel, or a relaxation area for insects. Ivy vines are a great for tying things together or using as a swing hanging from a branch, leaves pierced by sticks make fantastic parasols or seats, think outside (no box required), the more you look to the forest floor for materials to use the more creative or crazy your inventions will become. Kids can spend hours on this being more imaginative with each new idea until the forest no longer looks like a place just full of trees but an adventure wonderland.