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Muddy Faces

Published on 22.12.19 in Nature

Nature Tables

Nature Tables and Winter Solstice

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. Sign up before December 31 to get your copy (see below)."

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.

New catalogue - sign up by 31 December

Make sure you receive your very own copy of our splendid new catalogue, delivered right to your (correctly addressed) door - sign up by 31 December.

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Thank you to Rachel Goss of Outdoor Adventures Forest School in Ripon for sending in our cover photo, as part of our Mud Day photo competition this summer.
You can see all the great Mud Day 2019 photos in our Mud Gallery.

Christmas opening (and closing) times:

Please note, our offices will be closed from 24th - 30th December.

See you in the New Year!


Our one stop shop has a diverse selection of practical, educational and inspiring products for all your forest school, outdoor play and learning requirements.

Nature Table

From: £449.90 exVAT

Ideal for displaying all your wonderful nature finds; perfect for gathering round to investigate, explore and discuss!

This combined table & shelves unit is our very own design, made from wood grown in sustainable UK woodlands.

Buy now

Nature Table Resources Set

£329.99 exVAT

We've created a range of accessories in keeping with the new Nature Table theme - learn all about the weather and keep track day by day with this lovely display.

More details in our brand new 2020 catalogue!

Buy now

Outdoor Hub:

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.

Health & wellbeing

The heartiest section of our Outdoor Hub - with research & reports, videos, guides and articles on the benefits to wellbeing of spending time outside; plus focused sections on mental health, nature connection and practicalities of health, hygiene and comfort while you're outside.

With an introduction from Coralie Hopwood of the John Muir Trust (at time of writing).

Read More about Health & wellbeing

Nature & nature connection

Books, guides & useful websites, Nature Connection & Nature Deficit, research, reports & videos.

Read More about Nature & nature connection


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