Tuesday, 28 January 2014

The Hatching

Singing the fish, 1:
The Hatching
river catchment area up at Wycoller in Trawden

A new project begins now. 6 schools in Burnley have received aquaria and are now hatching small numbers of fish eggs so that the school communities can watch these first few weeks of trout-life before releasing the fish into the rapidly improving River Ribble

My friend Steve Brown are going to be working in those 6 schools to write poems and stories and make music inspired by this process. The resulting artwork will help reinforce the experience and will help us share the excitements and anticipations of The Hatching with a wider public

Activities began on Saturday as part of an Open Day at the Canalside Community Association's centre in Burnley. There between storytelling and noisy drumming sessions we were making the components of a healthy river….with a few implausible additions

Over the next few weeks, I'll add poems, pictures and music (if I can manage that) to share the excitement of our new families

"In the past, industrial and agricultural pollution as well as water abstraction and inadequate sewage treatment have caused severe habitat damage to the Ribble and its tributaries, to such an extent that the wildlife supported by the river has been put under threat. The Trust was established in order to enhance the water environments of the catchment, by restoring and protecting the river to make certain that future generations can enjoy the beauty of its wildlife and fauna." - introduction from the Trust's website 

sharks and a crocodile claim local children

B is for Buildings

This is work in progress for a shadow slideshow rather than a shadow-puppet show. Working a bit on the liens of "what can we make and show in 75 minutes. This is a Year 1 class - well done, folks!

Music:  Little Epiphany, by the group This is progress from the CD And so Begins the Snow

Storytelling, mountains and wonders

Storytelling workshop
Glenmore Lodge, Aviemore, 
6th April 2014

ancient woods and deep pools will share their stories

Every year I do a lively day of tale-telling, riddles, and wild lies  as part of the Wilderness Guide Training Programme.

These are cheerful, busy days where we draw inspiration from the world around us to compose new stories, play with poems and finally find our own ways of remembering and retelling traditional stories

A day of excitement, laughter and challenges!

While this is part of the bigger Guide Training programme, you can book for just the single workshop (follow the link to find out more). Or why not make a weekend of it as that same weekend features other day workshops?  This year includes Gaelic in the Landscape, Wilderness Cookery and Astronomy

(this last is to be highly recommended - it is a very interesting day and two years ago we ended the workshop late on the Saturday night watching Saturn through a telescope and lying on the grass identifying constellations with mobile phone apps.) 

Monday, 20 January 2014

Festival of Outdoor Learning

The Annual Festival of Outdoor Learning
Hollowford Centre, Castleton, Hope Valley, Derbyshire
 22nd and 23rd February 2014

finding stories

I've been doing workshops at these gatherings for a few years now and they are always lively, cheerful events. Excellent opportuntieis for meeting people, catching up on old friends, making new ones, exploring ideas and having good-natured arguments with people

I am only there on the Saturday  doing workshops:
  • the Value of Tiny Things
  • Finding Stories (details below)

there might be crows too Tiny to photograph!

 Other excitements from a very busy programme include:
  • working with special needs students
  • circular map making
  • Biomimicry: learning from nature's genius
  • trainer in a rucksack

…and lots more!

Tiny lanterns might
light a small corner 
The conference often sells out (and at only £75 for the weekend, it's a bargain - the fee includes 4 workshops,a cocommodation and food) and workshop spaces need booking.
Follow the Lindley Trust link to find out more - and come and join us!

 My workshops:
Finding stories
A lively session spinning new stories, wild tales and improbable characters out of found materials. Working indoors and out, we'll look at techniques to use with groups to build stories to tell, practical hints and useful themes for ourselves as leaders and additional activities to give ourselves the confidence to weave new stories on the spot.

The Value Of Tiny Things
Two main themes coincide in this workshop: the sheer excitement a lot of children (and older people!) find in working on a small scale and the practical limits on what equipment we can carry with us. So, with a guide to "make nothing bigger than your own hand", we'll set off to explore some Tiny Worlds with pirates and goblins, castles, treasure maps, tiny books terrible, tiny monsters. There may be even a fleet of very small ships on a very small pond

Tiny Pirates meet a Tiny mermaid