Farm School has started back up and we don’t know who is more excited….. the children or the adults who get to go!
Our first visit was spent exploring the beautiful surroundings and talking to the children about what they would like to do while they were at Elm Tree Farm. We also made sure that we took time to explain the expectations to the children and how important it was that they listened so that they were safe.
When we arrived we were met by a little donkey who greeted us loudly. The children ran straight over and asked lots of questions to Claire who owns the farm. We found out her name was Ruby, that she had been rescued and that she was about 6 years old. The children got stuck straight in with helping to look after Ruby by giving her some food, cleaning her stable and putting down fresh bedding for her. The children had to use their arm and leg muscles to break up the large sawdust bale and worked out themselves that jumping up and down on it made it break up easier. When they were satisfied that Ruby’s bed was ready she was brought in to see her new bedroom. She stayed so we think she liked it! It was so lovely to see the care and concern that the children showed towards the animals and were so gentle as they brushed and stroked her. We learnt some important rules about how to brush horses and donkeys and that we must stay near the front of them so they can see what we are doing.
The children didn’t want any of the other horses to feel left out so they helped make up a bed for some of the others and chopped up some apples to share with the horses. From our point of view it was wonderful to see how some of the children who seemed nervous around the animals to start with were willing to get nearer as the day went on and even have a go at feeding them from their hands. A brilliant achievement in such a short space of time. We are so excited to watch the children’s confidence grow as the weeks go on.
While the children were exploring they came across a small area full of trees and a wooden cabin. One of the children thought they saw a pixie in one of the trees so of course we had to investigate to try and find some more!! We had to be extra quiet so the pixies didn’t hear us coming but we were a little too noisy and they flew away before we managed to see one. We did however find a hole in the ground which the children are convinced is where the pixies live! The children have now named this area ‘Pixie Wood’.
At the farm the children had lots of time to just run free in the open fields and climb the different sized trees. The perseverance of the children to climb one particular tree was impressive and they kept trying again and again. We have set ourselves the challenge of being able to climb the tree by the end of the six weeks! No doubt with the determination that the children were showing we will be up the top in no time. Watch this space!!