A Place of Possibilities – Histon Footprints began on Thursday 3rd November with a first meeting in Homefield Park. Practitioners from Histon Early Years Centre, joined later by parent volunteers, met with us (Deb Wilenski and Mary Jane Drummond from CCI) to explore the space and establish some core values for the project. Through a game of cards, we explored the questions “where are we and what lives here?” literally, imaginatively, fantastically – using images connected with woods to provoke personal memories and experience, childhood stories, iconic pictures, and new suggestions for this project. Here are some of the images, and the words we associated with them:
Stories, the new stories these children will make, imagination, lurking, darkness, wildlife, wintertime, seasons, being the first, adventure, escaping, birds, distress, light, dark, perspective, different places, exploring, finding things, big scale, bears, wolves, colours, beauty, curiosity, sinister, empathy, risk
Participants were invited to explore the park and woods with one of these words or images in mind, and at the end to bring something back, something they found or words to represent where they went.
These are some of the possibilities of the space that were encountered that afternoon: cosy places, ‘cocoons’, a world of leaves of different colours and textures, safe places, quiet and peacefulness, secluded spaces, the ‘darkest place’, stories, the perfect tree-house tree, and a dead bird which Serga thought twice about bringing back but which we agreed would have been welcome and fascinating for children to see.
We decided to work with three strong values, to focus our pedagogy and practice through the project and create links between the experiences of the different groups of children and practitioners;
- sharing fascinations
- a spirit of exploration