I’ve been wanting to review “The Stick Book” for some time as it provides such lovely inspiration for childrens outdoor fun. There is so much you can do at no cost using natural materials, but sometimes you need a gentle push in the right direction, to make use of those branches and twigs we find laying around our gardens or local woodland. We invested in a copy of this book before our first Adventure Bugs session as I’d heard about it from the Forest Schools training. Written by Fiona Danks and Jo Schofield, the book includes some fantastic photographs and instructions for all sorts of stick craft from woody crowns and woodland monsters to kite and den building.
We have plans to try out lots of ideas from this book over the coming months, and there is inspiration for all seasons such as the Christmas Wreath and a nest for Easter. But I’m sure our little ones will be more interested in using their sticks to draw in the mud or to play pooh sticks!
Here are some things we’ve tried so far:
Branches we collected, snapped and bound together with string to make our stick men which we then decorated with leaves and ferns to makes a head and arms. The children were so proud of their craftwork (with a little help from the grown-ups of course) that they couldn’t wait to show them off and were delighted to take them home.
We’ve also done a little raft building which the children loved as it gave them the opportunity to splash in the stream in their wellies. We collected twigs of similar length and wove long blades of grass this way and that, to give our rafts some structure and had a mini raft race in the shallow part of the stream.
Next on the agenda is to build a bug hotel or natural habitat pile and let the creepy crawlies feast on our rotting wood. Perhaps we could keep going back to it and add more sticks and leaves over time to build a bug mansion? Whatever we decide, as long the children have fun with nature, then we know we are on the right track!
We’d be interested in your makes and do’s from The Stick Book so please let us know what activities you have tried in the comments section.