The county’s leading nature conservation charity is expanding its provision for outdoor play for babies and toddlers through a new programme of activities.
Staffordshire Wildlife Trust is introducing ‘Wildlings’ sessions at its Wolseley Centre headquarters, near Rugeley, from March. Wildlings will run from 10.30am-12pm on the first and third Friday of each month.
The sessions will give children, aged from six months to five years old, the chance to play and explore nature in the centre’s outdoor classroom, uninterrupted by adults.
Alexis Johnson, the Trust’s education officer, said: “Quite a lot of research has taken place to show how beneficial uninterrupted play is for a child’s development. Children grow to be more independent and more creative when given the time to play on their own from a very early age.
“Parents should also reap the benefits from this, reducing the amount of time they’ll need to spend entertaining their children as they grow and develop their vital independence.”
Evidence has shown that free play in outdoor green spaces for very young children improves their ability to deal with stress and focus attention as well as improving social skills.
All staff who deliver the sessions will be Forest School qualified and DBS checked.
Families can get involved for just £5 per child and £2 for additional siblings. A healthy snack and a drink will be included for all children, and adults will also be provided with a hot drink.