Friday, 21 November 2014

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Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Mark your place

Tonight our Elfins worked really hard on sewing their bookmarks. There was a lot of concentration, a touch of frustration at times and many many rethreaded needles but the results speak for themselves.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Campfire Evening

For a number of years now it's been our tradition to end each term with an outdoor evening. With the evenings drawing in but not yet too cold it's the perfect time of year for a camp fire.

 Thanks go to Wood Camping for letting us use their site, it's wonderful woodland with plenty of space for exploring. By the end of the evening people were already starting to think about a spring camping weekend.

This evening though was all about the fires. Everyone had a chance to have a go at lighting their own fire using the fire steels. It takes a bit of practice to be able to get a spark but soon each group had a small fire burning.

Then it was back to the main fire for a bit of cooking, pop corn and marshmallows today, and a few songs before it was time to head home.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Games and Gods Eyes

Around this time last year our Pioneer group spent some time making up their own games. They even made videos so we could remember how to play them.

Although it's been a while we haven't forgotten them as this week, as the Elfins and Pioneers were meeting together it seemed a good time to introduce one of these games to the younger children.  Two of our Pioneers took the lead in explaining the rules, and our game of "floor" was great fun.

We also finished off weaving our gods eyes. These weaving originate in New Mexico and the weaving of them is often a time for reflection. We certainly found it quite a peaceful activity as a group, and as people got more confident with the weaving it was a lovely way to be able to sit and chat together.

Monday, 18 August 2014

September Vacancies

We have places in the Elfin group, for children aged 6 - 9 years old starting Sept.

We also have a very limited number of places in the Pioneer group, for children ages 10 - 12 years old, again starting in September.

If you are interested please contact us on

Children are welcome to join the group at the start of the term they turn 6, so if your child will be 6 soon do get in touch. We are also taking names for the waiting list if you child will turn 6 later in the year.

The group meets every Wednesday during term time, with at least one session each term being an outdoor one. We also join with other local groups for camps and activities throughout the year.

The cost is £26.40 per term (12 weeks).

Summer Term

The final weeks of the summer term were a very busy few for the group.  The middle of June saw our annual taster evening, when we open our doors for everyone to join us in an activity or two.

This year, the elfins made wooden badges and bird feeders. The Pioneers made small pea shooters and spent the rest of the session devising games to play with them.

The Pioneers spent the next few sessions on some more wood projects, this time making small pendants or in some cases guitar plectrums form different varieties of woods. You can really see the differences in the colours and grains of the woods up close, although it's not so easy form the photo.

The elfins focus for the last few weeks was on playing outdoors. We had  session using lots of different ways of blowing bubbles, and even using them to make prints. We also made our own kites.

Monday, 16 June 2014

Bushcraft Day

Over the weekend we spent a wonderfully sunny day in the woods.

First job when we arrived was lighting our campfire so we could start cooking lunch. Fresh Bread, Jacket Potatoes and sausages, yummy.

 The bread on a stick was very popular

The afternoon was far to warm to stay sitting round a fire, but the shade of the woods was a lovely place to be, especially with the rope swing.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Pioneer Tile Painting

After several sessions of bushcraft the pioneers have produced some wonderful spreaders, forks and spoons, photos of those to follow.

However it was time for a change so after playing some games out in the sun the challenge this week was to decorate some ceramic times and what wonderful designs they came up with.

Fun at the festival, part 2

It wasn't a promising start as we put the stall up in the rain but despite the forecast that was the only rain we saw.

We got the opportunity to display the banner the Pioneers made last year, as well as the bunting form Spring Camp.

It was a quiet morning but by the afternoon the festival was quite busy and quite a few badges were made. As always there were some lovely designs.

There was also lots of interest in the group, and hopefully we'll have some new faces at the taster evening next week.

Thanks to Bradley Stoke radio with whom I did a brief interview on the day, and have been publicising the event for us this week.

Friday, 6 June 2014

Fun at the Festival, part one

Great fun at the Start of the Bradley Stoke community festival this morning as we joined the Friends of Jubilee Green for a picnic in the park, have a look here for pictures of the day

Giant Kerplunk and the Parachute were both very popular, though the second session of the patrachute games was a little quiet. You can't compete with picnics :-)

Hopefully the weather will hold out for the main event tomorrow, lucky dip is all ready. I just need to cut out soem more blanks for the badge making.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

End of Term Fun

It's become a tradition for the group to spend the last session of each term outdoors, and what a great evening we had for it this term. Still sunny, but just a little cooler that it was earlier in the day. Perfect for running and playing games.

We also tried a new venue, a local park with some big grassy spaces which worked really well for running games.

Capture the flag was a big hit, so much so the children voted to play it again. We then moved on to non stop rounders, a new one for many of the younger children in the group.

We didn't leave quite enough time for the playground, but thanks to all the Mums and Dads who let everyone have a few extra minutes of playtime before heading home.

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Spring Camp Fun

Wow, what a great camp. The Pioneer's cake were every bit as good as they looked and proved very popular.

The weather was on our side too and we were treated to a weekend of glorious sunshine, although the nights were still very cold.

As with all camps the first thing we did after getting our tents up was find out which clans we were going to be in. Clans are our small groups who work together, takign a turn at all the jobs which need to happen to keep the camp running. This year all were named after animals.

Each clan worked together to make a clay figure of their animal,then we set off into the woods and built rafts to float the little animals down the stream.

All the rafts were different shapes and sizes, looks like some people had even bigger plans

There was plenty of time to relax around the site

or do a bit of whittling over in the bushcraft area

We started making our own camp bunting too, it will be fun to add some more flags and see it grow over time

Sunday afternoon saw everyone back in the woods together, this time for some medieval themed fun and games. With the help of Robin Hood,s band of followers will the peasants be able to collect enough salt, meat, bread and beer or with the Sheriff and his henchmen get the better of them.

The Great Pioneer Bake Off

As always the few weeks before Spring Camp are a busy time, and this year was no exception. This year, as well as all the usual preparations the Pioneers went one further and had a Great Pioneer Bake Off.

Armed with recipes, scales and lots of ingredients they went to work. Look what they created, yum yum yum.

Thursday, 3 April 2014

We're going on a bat hunt

Although it's a little early in the year for bats to be out of hibernation we though after this very mild winter we'd see if any where up and about early this year. So this week we borrowed some of the bat detectors from the library and set off into the woods.

It was a early in the even for the bats to be out, so before we got the bat detectors out we had time for a few round of capture the flag. Great fun was had using the bushes as cover and trying to sneak up on the other team's base.

After a drink it was time to try out the bat detectors. There were lots of birds swooping around over the woods, so we thought there were probably insects out. A yummy meal if you are a bat
Having tuned the detectors in we demonstrated how they work by listening in to a jangling bunch of keys, investigating how far away we could hear them, and how accurately the bat detectors had to be pointing at the source of the noise.

As we walked around the pond and along the stream we kept as quiet as we could and listened in to the detectors.
Sadly we were not in luck tonight, perhaps the bats are still in hibernation or we were too early in the evening. We'll defiantly be trying again later in the year though, as it was great fun.

April Fool

The Pioneers started planning their jokes early this year, these fake spilled drinks were great fun to make but do take a long time to dry.

However, they were worth the wait, it seems quite a few parents have had to do a double take this week..

Plaster casting

The Pioneers have spent a couple of weeks working on some plaster casts, first using plasticine to create their moulds. It's tricky remembering that the eventual cast will be a mirror image, especially if yo are doing lettering.

Once the moulds were complete it was time to mix the plaster and pour it in. As it takes a while to set it was a whole week before they could reveal the results,.

Wow, some beautiful designs and lovely choice of colours.

Caterpillars and Easter Baskets

Every year groups from across Bristol get together for a day of fun and games, followed by dancing to with live music provided by some of our older teenagers. Each group also prepares a short performance for everyone, so this year we had a go at making some shadow puppets.

We read the story of the very hungry caterpillar, and everyone decided which puppets they wanted to make and set to work.  They turned out really well, and the children had great fun performing thier show.

 With the Easter holidays approaching we though we'd try our hand at some basket weaving, the children worked really hard on their baskets and I think the results are lovely. I love all the bright spring colours.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Let there be light

As we often go out into the woods, camp or even sleep in our shelters in the woods we all know that a torch is a very useful thing to have. A tiny powerful one that you can hang up in your tent or shelter is even better.

 With that in mind the Pioneers have all created their own tent lights. Small enough to fit in your pocket, but with the homemade diffuser, you can even read by it.

 Of course if you don't feel like a nice quite read there is more active fun to be had with them too