Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Making Fire At Gibside

We had a great time at Gibside today, doing one of their education workshops - fire making.

This was not only fun and informative, but a much-cherished opportunity to hang out with lots of other similar-aged home-ed children. I loved catching up with lots of mums I hadn't seen for a while and even meeting some dads for the first time. Francesca and Elizabeth loved reaquainting themselves with friends and Sebastian found Sam (his big-boy role model friend) again.

The teacher, Melanie, showed us how to make friction and warmth by rubbing wood together.

The children listened carefully to safety instructions - how to keep the fire contained by using a cleared space and surrounding the fire-place with stones.

Everyone had a go at creating friction with wood, both by hand and with a bow to make the stick twirl faster.

Then we made sparks by rubbing metal together.

Using this method, we set fire to some cotton-wool.

Happy boy trying very hard to make a spark to light his cotton wool.

Everyone helped to build the fire, starting with tinder, then kindling, then increasingly large sticks. Melanie lit the tinder with her spark-making device and then showed us how to build the fire up carefully, letting the air get to the flame.


Sebastian found his own little log to sit on.

All the children sat round, toasting marshmallows. Which they then ate, of course.

Sebastian needed some help with his sticky marshmallow.

Francesca acquired a puppy to play with.

We all went to picnic and play in the Strawberry Castle play area (no pics) before heading home.

Here's Francesca:

Teddy got a close look at the chapel too.

"Let's have a last photo together before we go back to the car!"

"And me!"

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