Wild

It seemed apt at the start of our journey to blog about Wild and Imaginations, since these are core concepts of our business.

Wild often gets a bad rep. ‘He’s so wild’ doesn’t fill people with peace when they hear it about a child, or indeed an adult. But when you dig a bit deeper there is so much more to wild than its negative connotations.

In our business we wanted wild to represent:

  • Outdoors and nature;

  • Being unconfined; exuberantly overflowing

These two come together perfectly in our stay and play sessions as we try to offer children opportunities for their play to be unconfined by set resources or expectations, and of course, we hold them outside surrounded by trees, grass and wiggly worms.

Both of these are so beneficial for our children, especially in these formative early years. There are so many reasons to promote imaginative play outdoors, but below are just a few:

It helps them learn about the world: Little children are naturally curious and there is so much to investigate outside.

From where worms go when they wriggle away, to what clouds are made of, to when flowers grow and when they don’t, there is so much to observe and talk about.

I was recently teaching a class of Reception children and we had a conversation about whether or not a butterfly had legs. Unfortunately, it was hailing and we couldn’t take a chance on finding one outside, so we had to be satisfied with Google. But next time they see one, you can bet those children will be checking!

It also led me to an unresolved query: caterpillars appear to have at least 10 legs, but butterflies have only 6. Do they fall off in the transformation, or get absorbed into the body? I‘m still wondering about that one. It’s good for us to be curious too!

ladybird
toddler balancing
toddler climbing
  • It builds confidence: Children love to challenge themselves, physically and mentally. Outdoor play offers natural opportunities to push themselves, whether in balancing on a plank, going close to a creepy crawly or practising pouring without spilling. Under supervision children can push their boundaries in a safe and fun environment.
  • It sows seeds of good citizenship: We want our children to grow up loving their world and being passionate about caring for it. Early exposure to the joys of nature will build a firm foundation for future planet care, and help children to start understanding why we recycle, put litter in the bin instead of on the floor and re-use cups and bottles.
  • It has wide-ranging health benefits: Living close to nature and spending time outside has significant and wide-ranging health benefits – exposure to green space reduces the risk of type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, premature death, stress, and high blood pressure. Children and parents both can benefit from this amazing catalogue of pluses!
  • It reduces stress and anxiety: Natural environments are less demanding on the brain as attention is undirected and can freely wander. In our stay and play, while the children have a range of activities to enjoy, there is complete freedom to move to none or between all as they feel.
  • It’s good exercise: It’s very hard for a child to be sedentary outside; there is just too much to be curious about. Getting into the habit of moving and enjoying it is something that will pay dividends for the rest of a child’s life.

Some of the most beautiful, captivating and joyous things in life are wild. Think of flowers on a hillside, waves crashing against cliffs, wisps of cloud on mountain tops, and sunsets over the ocean. So much of modern life is tame and cultivated. We ourselves, as well as our children, need moments where we are and enjoy the wild.

If you’d like to find out more about our outdoor Stay and Play sessions at

Grove Tennants Hall in Harborne click here.

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Where’s your favourite wild place? What’s your favourite outdoor activity? Comment below!

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