I was fortunate *ahem* enough to go on the Reception class school trip last week. We took 28 4 and 5 year olds to the Boxmoor Trust for a day in the woods based on the theme of ‘habitats’. The children got to try their hands at pond-dipping (in a brilliantly built child friendly pond built for pond-dipping in)
and much to their delight found all sorts of pond life – including this very handsome smooth newt as well as diving beetles, water boatmen, “zillions” of water fleas and all sorts of larvae that will later become things that bite us!
Whilst the weather was as unpredictable as the rest of the English summer has been so far, we were blessed in that it remained dry and warm whilst we did the activities and the heavens opened once we were inside for our lunch. The area surrounding the pond has been planted with native flowers and left to fend for itself – and as such was a hive of activity with insects including this stunner:
and this lovely beetle – I just think his antennae look amazing sticking out above the purple:
The children had a brilliant time in the ‘forest’ hunting for mini-beasts, collecting slugs, snails, beetles and other goodies with much enthusiasm – I admit to being more taken with the light coming through the trees…
And to finish off – we were less than 2 miles away from the urban sprawl that is Hemel Hempstead – on one side we had views this amazing:
The children had an amazing time and really enjoyed their pirate treasure hunt in the afternoon. For some of them it was their first experience walking in woods, let alone being allowed to investigate what was around them. We took home some very tired, very muddy, very happy little people.