Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Dragon Dance

Tonight we made our own dragons, then used them to perform a dragon dance.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Going Bananas for Monkeys

Welcome to 2017, and to our new members. We've already got a few dates in the diary for some activities with local groups, and plans are underway for a big event of the year, Summer Camp so there's lots to look forward too.

This week the group took on a monkey theme with games of monkey monkey banana and monkey hospital tag.

Did you know there are 264 different species of monkey?

The smallest monkey is the Pygmy Marmoset which weight just 85-140g which is about the same as a banana. The largest monkey is the male Mandril which can weight 35kg. That's as much as 200 bananas!

The loudest monkey is the Howler Monkey, who's call can be heard up to three miles away.

2016 was the year of the monkey in the Chinese calendar, 2017 will be the year of the Rooster.

After our games and news circle the Elfins created their own monkeys. I'm not sure you'll find many of these in the known 264 species.

The Pioneers are continuing work on their survival kits. This week they began making a pouch to keep all their equipment handy. After drawing round the template and cutting out the shape they needed to carefully punch holes along the edges of the leather so they can sew them up.

Friday, 13 January 2017

Scrapheap challenge

A large pile of cardboard tubes, empty boxes, plastic bottles, tubs and a few rolls of sticky tape. Just add marbles.

Our challenge was for each of the groups to make a marble run at least 2 meters long and where the marble would drop into a container at the end. If that's not enough of a challenge, then try to get the marble to do a trick.

In this case getting the marble to bounce off the trampoline into the next run.

There was some debate about whether it was cheating to use the tables as part of the run, but Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. They certainly reduced the materials used and tables are reusable so....

Looking back over 2016

As has become our tradition we took to the woods for our last group night of the year.

The woods take on a different character at night, with just your own beam of torch light to pick out your path. the games we play so often take on a different feel when played in the dark.

We started with some tracking, one group setting off and making a trail for the second group to follow. Rather than laying arrows we made a sound trail. Both groups aimed to be a quiet as the could, but every so often the trail layers would make a sound for the trackers to follow.

We also played a seasonal Christmas Tree pairs game, hunting to find matching pairs of Christmas trees with our torches.

Over hot chocolate everyone shared their favourite memories of the past year, as you might expect Spring camp was a highlight for lots of people. Especially the caving and the banoffee pie.  Our weekend in the woods was also high on people's favorite's list. 

Of the Wednesday evening activities the Pioneers have been really enjoying making their own survival kits, they've made their own compass, learned some basic first aid, and lots of other things. It's an ongoing project with lots more to do in the new year.

The clay Christmas decorations and glitter were a big hit too. I suspect getting the last traces of glitter out of the group equipment box might last well into the new year too :-)

Craft time

As the nights draw in and our evening sessions are indoors it's time to break out the scissors and glue form some craft time.

There were some wonderful creations with autumn leaves.

Again using the autumn trees as out inspiration we made our own trees, weaving in lots of different colours and textures of fabric to make the tree canopy.