Who are the VYFWBP?

We are a friendly community group, run by parents, who meet every Thursday morning in West Bank Park, York. Whatever the weather, school hols included, we spend a couple of hours in the woods and meadows of the Park, doing nature games and crafts, building or making things with materials we find, telling stories and singing songs.

We are open to all - with a contribution of £1 a family (to cover basic equipment) - so if you want to join us, see you on Thursday at 10am at the statue of Queen Victoria, at the top of the Rose Walk. (Bring something simple to share at snack time.)

For more information contact Elly at: westbankparkkids@gmail.com

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Summer shenanigans

What have we been up to during the summer holidays? What HAVEN'T we been up to? The weather has not always been on our side, but it doesn't usually seem to matter. For me the highlight has to be today's blackberry picking and blackberry-pancake-feast, then seeing so many of the children enthusiastically participating in the story of the 'Flippy Floppy Pancake' by tearing around the clearing chasing an imaginary pancake.

But we have also made some surprisingly appealing rose petal perfume (and dabbed it behind our ears), gone digging for creepy-crawlies, begun a whole saga of stories about the hedgehog Mr Snuffles and his friends, and made soup for the fairies. On this occasion a few of the children even SAW some fairies coming out of a hole in a tree, but no adults were watching at the time.

Unfortunately my children and I missed the two late-July sessions - making extremely messy and colourful sand pictures one week, and building houses from straw, sticks and bricks (a la 3 Little Pigs) the next, I believe. Hopefully Lauras M and B can give fuller details on these in a future blog entry.

In addition to our usual Thursday meetings, the annual Play Day for children of all ages was enjoyable and well-attended. As well as helping Mary Passeri gather people's impressions of the park on clay 'maps' for the art project, we sent pairs of adults and children off on the game of 'Blind Man's Tree'. This is always a winner, no matter how cynical the adult or hyperactive the child. It goes as follows:

- the adult is blindfolded and the child leads them, by a circuitous route, to a tree of their choice in the park, trying not to let them get injured on the way!
- The adult gets to know the tree without removing their blindfold - by feeling its bark and girth, maybe taking a rubbing of it, smelling it, feeling its leaves or flowers
- The child leads the adult back to the starting point and removes the blindfold.
- The adult must then find 'their' tree. They always manage it!

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Our beloved Queen Victoria

Our beloved Queen Victoria
We sometimes bow to her before we set off into the woods!