My Wild Classroom

(c) Nick Turner

When Zoe was young she went for walks in the countryside every weekend. She thinks that a love of nature and being outside should be encouraged and when it starts young, it stays with you.

Zoe’s four-year-old Ridley adores looking at tiny creatures and learning more about them. They have had snaileries and wormeries at home – and their My Wild Child group at Horfield Common, in Bristol takes that interest to a new level for him. Ridey and Zoe have learnt the names of a shield bugs, leopard slugs and get to examine spider webs. To Zoe, these activities help children appreciate the diversity of nature on their doorstep and they also encourage a respect for that wildlife, even when living in a city. 

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Where was the photo taken?
At Horfield Common

What were you doing while the photo was being taken?
We were looking at a shield bug, a leopard slug and a particularly interesting spider web – we didn’t know the names of any of these fascinating creatures before we came along that day to be shown them by the fantastic My Wild Child Team from Avon Wildlife Trust

What were you feeling at the time?
I was feeling really excited to have found such a welcoming group, and one so perfectly suited to my 4 year old who absolutely adores looking at tiny creatures and learning more about them. We have had snaileries and wormeries on our windowsills at home – and this group takes that interest to a new level for him.

What do you love about nature and/or this place or activity specifically?
I think this activity helps children to appreciate the diversity of nature on our doorstep – it also encourages a respect for that wildlife

What can you share about your story with nature?
Ever since my children were small we have always borrowed stacks of books from our local library on animals, wildlife and the world around us. When I was a child we used to go for walks in the countryside every single weekend – I think that love of nature and being outside is to be encouraged and it starts young, it stays with you.

Why is nature important to you?
Living with green spaces around us is vital for so many reasons – its important for our mental health, for the health of the city and it’s a constant reminder of the need for balance and to slow down. It’s a caution against the arrogance of human beings.

Find out more about our My Wild child project, supported by players of People's Postcode Lottery here