Home » Summer 2023 Report
What a busy summer it has been at Singleton Environment Centre. It has been a pleasure to welcome so many families to the centre over the school holiday period. Great Chart with Singleton Parish Council have kindly supported the education work at the Environment Centre which has allowed us to put on a huge range of activities to keep the children busy and entertained. In total, over 580 participants have taken part in one of our Summer 2023 events.
We have held three Nature School Family Fun Events – Magnificent Moths, Rad Reptiles and It’s A Pond Life. On these events families have had the chance to learn some fascinating facts, complete identification sheets, explore the centre grounds on scavenger hunts, create a themed craft item and made a themed treat to eat. Most importantly they have had some fun family time together sharing in their learning and enjoyment of nature.
Our first Nature Stories session was an interactive telling of We’re Going On A Bear Hunt. Our younger visitors completed activities linked to the story as they walked through the centre grounds. The children made grass heads, went pond dipping, created clay bears, made bear stick puppets, danced in snow bubbles and found mini bears to take home. They hunted high and low and we are pleased to report that the centre grounds are now free of all bears!
Wednesdays were extra fun with our drop and leave Wild Wednesday sessions. Every Wednesday a group of children from age 6 years + spent the day at the centre taking part in a range of outdoor activities. There was pond dipping, den building, scavenger hunts, team games, minibeast hunts and nature craft. The firepit cooking was very popular and the children cooked toast, popcorn, pitta pizzas, hot chocolate, s’mores and roasted marshmallows. It was a pleasure to spend time with such delightful children and to see new friendships form.
We had some special guests this summer. Phil from Jaws n Claws spent two full busy days with us along with a range of his fascinating reptiles. We were also pleased to be able to run two SEND friendly animal handling sessions. Mark and his team brought the magnificent Owls from Leeds Castle along for a visit. As well as meeting the owls the children made a wooden owl decoration to take home.
There was lots of recycling fun on our Junk Creators and Break Then Create sessions. Children aged 8 years + got to break apart a range of household items, including laptops and game consoles, to explore their inner workings and then using the parts to create art pieces. There was also lots of imagination used by the Junk Creators to turn our huge pile of recycled items into some wonderful models.
Our Make It Days showed just how creative our participants are. They made some wonderful unique t-shirts, hats, bags, pencil cases and make up bags. Lots of children enjoyed making a wooden medal using the Hapa Zome technique to hammer colour from plants on our free event. We were very impressed by the talents of the participants on our Nature Pics session. The children, aged 8 years +, learnt about angles, composition and lighting to take beautiful nature photographs on their camera phones.
It wasn’t just the children having fun! Our first session in our adult programme ‘Prosecco with …’ saw a group of adults learning how to use cyanotypes (sun printing) to design and make a beautiful cushion cover. The results were fantastic. The first Words with Brunch session was run by Sita where a group of adults used the centre grounds as inspiration for their creative writing.
Thank you all for supporting Singleton Environment Centre and making this summer so much fun. We hope to see you all enjoying the centre grounds very soon.
Helen, Education Officer, September 2023
First printed in Great Chart with Singleton Parish Council Newsletter Issue 9 2023