Saturday, 3 May 2014

Hill End Play Day, Oxfordshire

We have mentioned Hill End before on this blog, it's an outdoor education centre in Oxfordshire and often used by schools and organised groups. They have started doing more family activity days during the holidays which we are always keen to attend if we can. We spotted the Easter play day on twitter, and thankfully they were running it on a day we had off from work. So out the sun came, we rounded up Charlotte, invited 2 of her friends and off we went exploring.

Hill End
On arrival the girls were given a sheet of 10 things to do at Hill End and a map of the site. There are plenty more things to get up to, but 10 fitted in with the time it was open... the girls would have stayed all day if they could.

First up make music in the sound garden, think old rubbish that makes a good noise. Xylophone shopping trolley for example.

Get lost in the willow maze. Not quite sure how the girls managed to get lost, but with lots of squealing and I'm leading they made it in and out. We found a willow den next to this and told scary stories!

telling scary stories
Get muddy on a stream walk. Oh they loved this, one girl came minus wellies, but with some swapping and phil carrying the 3rd so they were all in the stream at the same time they did not want to get out.

going on a muddy stream walk
Find your favourite tree. To them involved running around hugging trees shouting this one, no this one until the all agreed on a silver birch.

Have an adventure in the explorers garden. Climbing over tree trunks and a brilliant water recycling activity that we had to tear the girls away from.

where will the water come out
 I read ahead to find the next activity was "muddy", so I told the girls to run up the hill and find the perfect spot for our picnic. We were right beside some daisies so once they scoffed food they ran off to make daisy chains whilst we got a few moments of rest.

The girls rolled down the damp hill to the next task.

Make a mud pie in the mud kitchen. A lot of oh no and gasps and ew mud from all 3 of them. But after a little bit of encouragement they were making  a big apple crumble and adding extra crumble topping, I think they skipped the main course! They did get a little freaked over how muddy they were (and they were cleaner than most there) by the end but they loved it.

a mud apple crumble anyone
Walk to the top of the hill. They are 6 of course they ran, then rolled down (the next task) and then repeated, again and again.

Walk through the silver birches. Junior school did teach me something, this is about the only tree I know and all the girls loved them and their lovely colour. Charlotte now shouts out silver birch when she spots one.

Tell the time on the human sun dial, not quite sure the girls got this one but they loved looking at it, the numbers and months and standing in the middle. It was correct too.

It was 2pm we completed everything and our time was over, the girls did not want to leave.  They played in the sandpit until we were the only people left and we really did have to leave.

heave ho in the sandpit
 The girls loved the day and both mums reported back about how their daughter couldn't stop chatting about the fun they had. We have noticed charlottes confidence improve too with trying  new things. We spotted another stream a few days later and she was in it before we could even check how deep it was, not quite over wellies thankfully.

Check out the Hill End website for more family events coming up... hint, hint May half term.

Thank you Hill End for such a good day.
The "Hill" End
linking up with #countrykids
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

1 comment:

  1. A picturesque location and great activities to keep the children active and engaged - I bet they had a wonderful time together. Thanks for linking up and sharing with CountryKids.


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