Creating a Winter Woodland

A Wonderful, Winter Woodland…

Here at Hope Education, we can’t get enough of the outdoors and nature, whatever the weather. We want children to be able to experience what their natural environments have to offer, and how they may change through all four seasons. So, this Winter, we wanted to provide you with a craft idea for your setting that would not only bring the outside in but provide sustainable alternatives to your usual favourite Christmas crafts.

It’s likely that many nursery settings have been making huge improvements this year to become more sustainable (as we have) and we didn’t want all the hard work to go out the window once Christmas arrives. So, borrowing ideas from nature, with sustainability in mind, we created our very own Winter Woodland, and we want to share how…

1.     Build your woodland

Depending on how big you want your woodland to be, and where you’ll be keeping it, pick a suitable tray. For ours, we used a Square Creation Station Tray however if you wanted to use something bigger, you could try a larger Play Tray. Both products work well because they keep everything in place and can easily be moved around.

Now that you’ve picked your patch, it’s time to build the foundations of your woodland, starting with what you might find on the ground. We used a range of our natural resources to this including gold bark leaves, wild grass bundles, bark squares and moss. We spread these out in our creation station tray to give a natural woodland ground feel.

2.     Decorate your woodland

Time to decorate! You have your woodland, you’ve laid the foundations, now you need to make it more Christmassy with some trees. First, to make things easier, start off with our very own Wooden Trees and paint it if you wish. Then add some Textile Cones as trees, wrapping one green in string and one in tissue paper. We also added some natural logs for more of a woodland affect. You can do more of less depending on how big you want your winter woodland to be!

3.     Invite some woodland friends

So now you have your woodland, you’ve added the trees and nature, but now you need some people and animals to bring it to life. Adding these will really help to create more of a small world play set up, rather than just a display. We wanted to continue running with the theme of sustainability and therefore made our ‘people’ out of tissue rolls and pine cones. We drew eyes on them and stuck pieces of card on to make noses. We also painted them a variety of colours to brighten the woodland. It wouldn’t be Christmas without some reindeers, so painted a couple of Papier Mache Roe Deer and invited them to join. HE333001

If you need some more inspiration on Christmas or festival crafts, or simply want more information on how to make your nursery more sustainable, have a look at some of our other blog posts here.

A Winter Wonderland