Sunday, 26 August 2007

Kids and Bushcraft

It takes a lot to scare me but what I had agreed to do quite terrified me! Could this be bungee jumping over a crocodile infested river with only a single thread of elastic? No. Could it be stalking a lion and slapping it on the rump, blowing a raspberry before running away? No. Or could it be teaching kids some bushcraft skills. Ooh yes!

I was persuaded by a local play group (CLOWNS)to run some bushcraft things for some of their summer activities. Naturally I agreed. As it got closer I got more worried. What a wimp, eh! Anyway, I was nervous on my first day but luckily only had about 20 kids to teach. I basically showed them how to use a firesteel to light a piece of cotton wool. Well, kids and fire do mix.

I'm not sure how many kids I taught over the 5 days but I think it was a little over 150. They aged between 5 and 13 and every single one managed to light the cotton wool at least once. I had very positive feedback from all the sessions (including the day I had over 60 kids to teach) which has pleased me greatly.

Now that I have done this and survived I can look back on it and safely say that I would do it again. I enjoyed it, even though it was hard work, and it was fantastic to see some of the reactions when they achieved fire for the first time. Bless 'em!

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Thursday, 16 August 2007

Summer Bushmoot and other stuff

Well it has been a while since I have posted anything which is mainly due to be being very busy this last month or so.

In the middle of July I helped out for a week at Canonteign for Shadowhawk Tracking School. We started off with an advanced course followed by a basic and intermediate. It was a bit difficult to swap your thinking around from running and advanced course to then running a basic but we managed. All the students did a fantastic job and everyone came away having had a great experience (life changing for some)! If you want to see a students eye view of the courses then take a look at Pablo's blog Woodlife: Nature, Wildlife and Bushcraft.

I then had a few days at home and then headed off with the family to the Summer Bushmoot for 5 days. This is an event organised by BushcraftUK. A big thanks must go to Tony and his crew for organising such a great event.

It was a fantastic few days. It was amazing how many people gave up their time to teach others their skills - all for the pleasure of it. I helped and ran a number of tracking seminars and was pleased with the responses I got. Again, thanks to everyone who attended. All in all I had a great time and so did the family and I'm looking forward to going again next year.

A few days after getting back from that I started my stint of teaching kids bushcraft but I shall leave that for another post.

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