A message from Liz Edwards, Muddy Faces founder & director:
"It's winter solstice today, a celebration of rebirth & new possibilities.
I have been pondering the gradual loss of Nature Tables over the decades. I still recall being at school, gazing with awe and wonder at the nature finds. One object in particular that still remains in my memory decades later was the papery-grey wasp's nest. It was so light!
Unfortunately, Nature Tables have all but disappeared, replaced by sterile posters and laminated pictures. Research has repeatedly shown us that exposure to the natural world and its myriad of bacteria and chemicals is hugely beneficial, not just for our physical health, but also our mental wellbeing.
So now I’m on a new mission - for a rebirth and new possibilities for Nature Tables! I hope we can be as successful with this as we have been with our mud kitchen campaign, which we started in 2012. Prior to this hardly any settings had mud kitchens, now they are everywhere.
Let’s bring the nature table back to the classroom!
You don't need to spend money setting up a nature table. Allocate a space, create a sign and welcome your children to bring in their fascinating finds. If you’re thinking YUCK, challenge yourself and ask WHY? Why not have a dead spider or wasp or a sheep’s jaw on display? By turning away a child’s precious treasure, the whole class could be missing out on a fascinating learning experience. Nature Tables are also an effective vehicle to involve home life and families.
You can make your own, but we've also created a brand new ready-made Nature Table from UK-grown sustainable wood - they'll be featured in our new 2020 catalogue, along with a bunch of other new resources."
If you already have a Nature Table let us know! Take a photo, tag us on social media and use #NatureTable. We'll be running a competition in the new year.
Muddy Faces shop - nature tables
Our one stop shop has a diverse selection of practical, educational and inspiring products for all your forest school, outdoor play and learning requirements.
The Outdoor Hub has a wealth of inspiring activities, events and information. Each section has been designed to encourage engagement in the outdoors, connection with nature and to help spark imaginative play and creativity.