Residential Forest School

 

‘Transition Tales’

Earth Stories to Empower and Heal

A series of stories and workshops to help young people reconnect with themselves and their environment.

‘Whenever a story is told, teller and listener embark on a journey’ Alida Gersie


    The cycle of Transition Tales is a series of story workshops which have an environmental as well as a personal focus. We use stories as a starting point from which to explore the power of personal stories. The sessions take place in an outdoor woodland setting so that the contact with the land is immediate and real. Through the power of stories, trust and respect for the individual, the group and the land is nurtured.

    The group is encouraged to use their listening skills and creative thinking to interpret the story and make it relevant to their life. Using natural and recycled materials the young people make something which deepens their connection to the earth and themselves. We use a variety of games and exercises inspired by Forest School to strengthen both personal confidence and interpersonal skills.

    As the group shares their stories and
    experience, empathy and a sense of
    guardianship is kindled. As understanding
    grows the motivation to protect and heal the
    earth increases.

    Storytelling is a fun and engaging way for young people to develop skills such as:

    • Active listening
    • Memory and recall
    • Communication and Language
    • Environmental Awareness
    • Imagination
    • Social Awareness
    • Creative Thinking
    • Emotional Literacy

     


     

    We  offer these workshops as a means for children to explore and recognise that ‘we know what we know’ and deep in our heart lies our connection to all living things, and that all things are alive “each in its own way, as should be, for we are not all the same” (Anne Cameron). In this connection ends loneliness and resides responsibility. We combine story telling with creative work, allowing a sense of ownership to develop, a connection that allows the story to become part of the listener.

     

    Example of Stories:

     

    1. We begin in the desert with ‘Amaya’, an original story by Atinuke, about a brave and stubborn child who brings rain and seeds back to her parched homeland. From this we move into exploring pods, seeds and imaginary life forms using clay.

    2. Then we travel to the ancient forest with ‘Vassalissa the Brave’, a Russian story about going into the darkness and with the help of a companion, bringing back the light - a companion that knows our uniqueness and helps remind us of our power. This is followed by making a companion/helper/doll out of natural and recycled materials.

    3. ‘Who Owns the Land?’ is a story from Sweden, set in mid winter in an agricultural landscape of ice and snow. It is about two men arguing over ownership of land, and about the damage we do to the intricate web of life in our insecurity and avarice. We then move through web games and movement to using a variety of materials to explore the interconnection of all things; and to a place of greater understanding.

      This is a selection of stories which we use. Each session will be created specifically for the group, with possible links to the curriculum or current learning requirements.   

      Workshop cost:

      £350 per day. Introductory offer for Autumn 2009 - £320. Includes two facilitators, all equipment and materials for groups of up to 25 children. The workshops and stories can be adapted depending on the needs of the groups. We welcome and enjoy working with children, aged 8-18 with all levels of ability.