For activity hour this week I wanted to do something to introduce the children to our new bug hotel. It was a short step from here to forming a whole session on mini beasts.
I had a copy of the Superworm book by Julia Donaldson which I love and which many of the children were familiar with so we began our session over in the craft tent reading some of the fun situations in which super worm found himself.
With imaginations fired up I showed the children how they were going to make their very own super worm from wool and sticks. I have to confess this was a bit of an aptitude test for the parents too as they followed my instructions on finger knitting. The children all chose their Superworm colours and watched their worms grow along their parents finger before choosing a twig handle and the wool to watch their worm wriggle and squirm along the ground. If anyone fancies having a go at these I am going to follow up with a step by step tutorial over on my new linky #Trash2Treasure.
Worms completed we moved onto painting stone bugs like the ones living in our Fairy Gardens. The children finger painted bugs in their own designs on to the stones, some resembled real bugs while others created interesting make believe bugs, each were finished with googly eyes.
Our minibeast session was moving at quite a pace and next up I had pinned a lovely tutorial from Baby Budgeting some time ago for attracting butterflies to the trees. This was the perfect time to give it a go after not finding enough time on our butterfly and Caterpillar week. The children loved making their plate designs and it was something every age group could do to their own level.
We threaded string through the edges of the plates and took them over to the fairy gardens and bug hotel along with some old pot plant holders. Over in the gardens we added a few slices of banana to everyone's plate and pot before hanging up the plates and wedging the pots in to any spare nook and cranny in the bug hotel.
We searched under logs and round canes for some real live minibeasts but didn't manage to spot any as the Hotel is still very new. However I knew just where there would be some and took the children into the higher levels of the Fairy Gardens to look under the tree stumps. Sure enough a plethora of worms, woodlice and the like scurried away from the light to the children's delight. They proceeded to lift every stump and giggle and the hive of activity that lay beneath picking them up where they could.
It was such a fun way to spend our hour and many of the parents were thrilled with the children's reaction to the bugs thanking me for making the creepy crawlies so exciting.
If you are fans of the Superworm story, you may be interested to know that The Forestry Commission have a Superworm Trail running over the summer in many of their woods. It's a great Country Kids day out at just the price of parking the car. If you are staying with us then Cardinham Woods is the closest at about 25 minutes drive from Coombe Mill.
Joining in with Country Kids
Country Kids is all about inspiring families to enjoy time outdoors away from sofas and screens. If you have a post that fits please do come and share with me. All outdoor fun including playing, crafting, learning and discovering are welcome. Please do check out some of the other posts linked up, there are always some great ideas to inspire your next outing.
Country Kids is around in these communities, I'd love you to join me:
Pin on the Pinterest Board Just ask for an invite to pin and include Country Kids on your pins for me to stop by on your boards too (no need for a hash tag in Pinterest)
Follow Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays's board Country Kids from Coombe Mill on Pinterest.
Join the Google Plus community page for Country Kids and add #CountryKids to your tag elsewhere for a +1 from me
Share your posts on Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids for a like or a re-tweet
A few of my favourites from last week:
Chocolate is not the only fruit returned to Coombe Mill for their family holiday and share their joy at being back on the farm
The Wildlife and Wetland Trust is the place to visit right now with gorgeous goslings all around as photographed by Attachment Mummy on a lovely family adventure
This playgroup in Cornwall was full of outdoor inspiration for Learning for Life
A Family Chatter makes camping in the South West with young children look quite idyllic.
With farm fields, toys, free play and some clever picnic boxes hosting a party is going to be a winner as Bubba Blue and Me discovered
For a great National Trust Day out try Cliveden House in Berkshire as visited by My Travel Monkey
Redpeffer used her National Trust membership after school where the children enjoyed the freedom of the gardens together