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Get your children outdoors this summer!

Posted: Wednesday 15th July 2015 by WildSchools

Getting children outside into the natural environment provides opportunities that will never be realised at home or at school; with research revealing numerous benefits to children's' physical health and well being, alongside improved learning abilities.

Bennett's Patch and White's Paddock, located on the Portway in the beautiful Avon Gorge, is Bristol's newest nature reserve and there is no better time to visit the site than this summer! There are so many butterflies and day-flying moths to be found in the patches of long grass, a healthy slow worm population calls the reserve home and the newly-dug ponds are already teeming with life.

Over the past year, through the hard work of the local community, the site has been transformed. With hundreds of people volunteering their time to plant almost 4,000 trees, the former sports ground has now become a haven for wildlife. But these changes are only the latest in a long line for a site that is so steeped in history; when you walk across the reserve, many layers of war rubble lay underneath your feet following the Bristol Blitz during the Second World War.

In an age where we are spending more time indoors, there are many of us who are becoming increasingly disconnected with the natural world; with the term 'nature deficit disorder' being regularly used to describe this effect. 

In a natural environment children can learn new skills, discover unique experiences whilst improving their concentration and improve observational and interpersonal skills. Getting outdoors is also crucial for the future of our environment; if our younger generation don't have an appreciation of wildlife and nature or understand its value they may not know the importance of protecting and conserving it. So we think it's time to get outside and explore the real natural world, rather than watching it on the TV!

During the summer holidays, our experienced tutors will be running a 'Wild About Life' holiday club for 6 - 11 year olds at Bennett's Patch and White's Paddock. These will take place on 30 and 31 July, 5, 6, 12, 13, 20, 26 and 27 August. Activities will include taking a closer look at some of the wildlife which lives at the nature reserve, playing games, having fun with arts and crafts and learning about how humans can use natural materials. What better reason to get your children outdoors, having fun and enjoying nature this summer... and it's a good excuse to give yourself a break!

For more information, as well as details on forest-school children's activities at Feed Bristol in Stapleton this summer, please visit: avonwildlifetrust.org.uk/whats-on
 

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