Monday 9 September 2013

We're going on a Bear Hunt...

We're going on a Bear Hunt with
We're going on a Bear Hunt 
Gonna catch a big one 
We're not scared 
Oh look, a forest! A tall, tall forest. 
We can't go over it, we can't go under it. 
Oh NO!
We've got to go through it....

On Friday morning we joined Paul, Forest School practitioner and Lead Adventurer at We Are Adventurers for a Teddy Bear Hunt in the Forest at Chorlton Water Park in Manchester. This fun activity was part of the Babes in the Wood Course, a series of six one our sessions for under five's to encourage little ones to get to grips with puddles, creepy crawlies and the great outdoors.

The weather was not great, the ground was wet and the rain was still coming down when we got there, but a little bit of water and mud would't stop our adventurous daughter, it just makes things even more fun as there are Muddy Puddles to jump in! (What child doesn't love muddy puddles?) We popped on the wellies and the waterproofs and off we went into the forest...

After a quick briefing about nettles and not picking up any rubbish, Paul told the children that we were there to hunt for bears so they should look on the ground for paw prints. Elizabeth's eyes immediately started scanning the undergrowth and it wasn't long before her face lit up as she had spotted a teddy bear hiding under a tree! After a brief look at us for reassurance that she was allowed to pick it up she toddled off to grab it and continued along spotting those cheeky teddy bears hiding in all sorts of places...

They were up trees, behind bushes, at the top of little hills, and even at the end of tunnels!

The children's excitement grew each time they spotted a bear, exclaiming, pointing and scrambling through the leaves and bushes to get to it!

The trail we followed led us to a clearing in the woods where we found some shelter in the form of a hidden den, we all sat down on the blanket undercover of canvas to listen to Paul reading Michael Rosen's popular children's story, 'We're going on a Bear Hunt', Elizabeth followed intently, joining in with the actions and words in parts as this is one of her favourite books at the moment.

Having Story time in the forest

After a fun storytime the crayons and paper came out and we created our own 'paw prints' by drawing around our hands, before warming up with some well deserved hot chocolate!

making our paw prints

After relaxing in the den counting the teddy bears the children had collected and watching the rain come down through the trees, we had another wander around and this time found something else hiding in the forest; baby Frogs!!

Despite at first attempting to pick one up with a pincer grip (!) I was really impressed at how gentle Elizabeth was holding it in her hand and peering intently at the tiny little creature, when we got home she excitedly told Nanna that she held a baby frog and it 'tickled her hand.'

I couldn't get over how tiny they were!

holding a baby frog

We had a really great time and it's been the topic of conversation in our house all weekend, really encouraging my two year old to talk about the different things she discovered. The Bear Hunt is just one of the sessions that We Are Adventurers offer as part of their Babes in the Wood course that takes place on Tuesday's and Friday's 10 – 11am and costs just £36 for 6 consecutive sessions. Which I think is really competitive, you can even take younger siblings along in carriers or pushchairs too and experience these outdoor adventures as a whole family. Find out more on the website.

 As well as being a fantastic way of Elizabeth learning about the world around her and gaining confidence in herself, the session was a great way of showing me that It's good to let my baby girl take risks and I saw a different side to her that made me glow with pride. 

I would recommend these sessions to any parent of under fives who would like to encourage their little ones to learn more about the great outdoors, fantastic fun for the whole family!

Last weekend we attended a special Bloggers session with some lovely friends and their children. I'll be sharing our experiences of both the Babes in the Wood group and the Adventure Club Party very soon but in the meantime check out theses posts from The Brick Castle and Mother Geek.

Disclaimer: We were invited to attend some sessions free of charge, we loved them and wanted to share that with you.  Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall


  1. This looks so much fun. We often take a little bear with us and hide it in the woods for the children to find as they love this story.

  2. Wow my two would love this! Do they do one off sessions?

    1. you never know, get in touch with Paul on twitter and ask? He's @leadadventurer

  3. A lovely post hon - and a huge thank you for the mention. My 3 year old learnt how to hold frogs carefully this year - we had a few pincer moments in the early days too :D

  4. Sounds amazing, we love that book!

  5. This sounds brilliant. Bear hunt is my 4yo's favourite book - he knows all the words off by heart :) Your daughter is very brave holding that tiny little frog, fantastic! x

  6. This is a great way to inspire children to want to explore and be adventurous with nature. They have made it so much fun for them by being creative and organised. Thanks for linking up and sharing with Country Kids - I look forward to reading about the next session.

  7. Looks like you had a fantastic time. I think it's important to teach our kids that there is a whole world out there not just Ipads, TV and DVDs or whatever it is that they play on these days. Great post with great pictures x

  8. aww how cute, looks liek you all had fun x

  9. Such a lovely idea and Bear hunt is one of our favourite stories :) it was great to meet you too. May see you at Blog Summit Today? (Today?? wow I really need to go to bed!)

  10. This looks like so much fun! We're reading the book every night at the moment as my little one got a jigsaw version for his birthday. Once he's properly walking Id love to go and do this :)

  11. Love this! It is exactly the kind of thing we love to do! Bear Hunt is Chesters favourite book. Looks like you had lots of fun xx

  12. Sounds like a great day was had by all!


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