June 2, 2019 :
: by wasteforlife |
Forest Exploratorium

So, after a couple of years of planning and preparing, we are now half-way through our very first Sullivan County based Forest Exploratorium for kids! Our eight-week Saturday Forest Play sessions for K-6 have as a recurring theme, ‘The power of myth and the forces of nature.’ Myths are powerful stories that guide and shape our understanding of life and living. Nature’s forces are so mysterious and incredible that even when we understand the science behind them, they can seem like magic. These ideas have shaped our sessions as we move through the forest – discovering, exploring, creating and connecting. First, we encountered Flora, as she celebrated spring through her Floralia Festival, dressing up as gladiators fighting the battle of balance, whilst colorful audience members showered us with lentils and flowers. Next, like the great God Pan, we made music in the forest with hand-made pipe instruments fashioned by designer Chris Rose from the Rhode Island School of Design, who led us like the Pied Piper on an exploration of sound and vibration. Later, we met mythical beasts through mask making with artist Clelia Scala, who visited us from Canada and lead us through the labyrinth of the Minotaur into the caves of the Cyclops and had us share snake damper with Medusa around the fire. And most recently, we moved away from ancient Greece and Rome into traditional local culture, embracing Indigenous connection to land and nature. We embarked on a journey by canoe, created songlines to lead us to treasures, created colorful talking sticks and listened to Lenape legends whilst eating cornbread made in a skillet on the fire.