We hosted our second Forest Babies session this morning and it was another huge success. The sessions came about after our leader Helena, who created Forest Explorers 6 years ago, failed to find any outdoor nature inspired baby groups she could attend with her 9 month old son. Each session is an hour and a half long, and a mix of free sensory play, songs, craft based led activity and fire snacks. Our aim is to simply provide a space for mums, dads and grandparents to come along with their babies, spend time in the outdoors, let their little ones explore and enjoy all the forest has to offer, and be able to meet other like minded parents too.
Our Forest area is set back from the main forest and is extremely quiet away from the hustle and bustle of the main visitor area. Our main focus will be on sensory, heuristic play. Each session begins with our welcome song, sat in a circle on the forest floor, we then let parents and children have some free play in all our sensory areas, or just to sit and chat with one another. There is always a main craft station, the last couple of weeks we have done a range of crafts from clay hand and footprints, to making name plaques from natural materials. The crafts are lovely keep sakes you can take home with you.
One thing we like to focus on for our Forest Babies class is textures, whether it be water, wood, sticks, trees etc. In each station, there are many different textures, sounds and materials. We also have hammocks for you and baby to relax in, a baby swing for your baby to swing gently in the trees and a story telling area.
To finish off our session, we all gather around the fire, for baby friendly fire snacks including pancakes, crumpets, toast etc and tea and coffee, we reflect on our session and sing our goodbye song. Its always a lovely way to close the sessions, and the babies all seem to love to songs and group interaction. It is truly such a wonderful hour and a half, both babies and parents leave feeling happier and more entertained. If you are interested in coming along to one of our Forest Babies sessions, please see our events page via our website, but quick spaces fill very quickly!! Sessions are then £6 per week, we will be running for 4 week blocks in total – 2nd July, 9th July, 16th July.