3 ways for parents to keep warm at forest school sessions.
1 - Layer up!
It’s very easy to spend all our energy getting the kids dressed and completely forget about ourselves!
When the kids get cold, we’ll often give them one of our layers but sadly it doesn’t work both ways. I look utterly ridiculous trying to ram a toddlers hat onto my enormous head or shove my fist into a pair of tiny mittens!
It’s much easier to keep warm than get warm, so make sure you’re trapping that heat from your house or car in as many layers as possible.
Here’s a little example of what three of our leaders wear for a session out in the winter temperatures:
2 – Get Moving!
Moving around gets that blood pumping around your body, from the warm parts like your torso and legs, around and into the extremities like fingers and toes.
We’ll always give you plenty of excuses for a run around. Hide and seek, hunters and rabbits or just a game of chase are all chances to get moving and model for the kids how to stay warm by moving.
Sitting by the fire isn’t the best move in our forest. It’s a big open fire, losing heat in all directions and standing still will mean the same parts of your body are getting exposed constantly to the biting wind. Get running or walking around and it’ll give you body a chance to heat you up all over.
3 – Positive Mindset
It gets cold in Britain. it got cold last year and it’ll get cold next year.
Much as the British love discussing the weather, it isn’t always helpful to be sharing stories about how cold our fingers are or how long it took to defrost the car.
Like we would say to the children, reframe your experience! Go exploring for beautiful signs of winter: icy spider webs, crunchy leaves, squrrels searching for nuts. Or even focus on the hot things around us. Talk to the children about how warm the fire is or share a cup of hot chocolate and really focus on feeling that warmth as you swallow and it warms your middle.