Mud Pies
Mud Pies nature courses are for children aged 2-5, and their parent or other carer and take place in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire


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Sticks and Stones - classes from birth to 24 months
Mud Pies  - classes for 2 to five year olds
We're Going On A Garlic Bear Hunt!

Sticks and Stones
Looking for a morning out in the fresh air with your tot, feeling great after having gone for a walk and spent time in a lovely wood? Sticks and Stones is the new activity class in Aberdeen for the under 2s and their adults to simply have fun in the outdoors. The initial taster sessions were so well received that activities will start again regularly on Thursday mornings after the Easter holidays at Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen.
Thursday mornings - 10 to 11.30am at Hazlehead Park.
Cost - £5 per class, payable in advance by session.
Thursdays 24 April to 22 May - 5 weeks: £25 - click here to book .
Thursdays 29 May to 3 July - 6 weeks: £30 - click here to book .
Meeting point - the wooden shelter in the main car park on Hazlehead Avenue.
Each class will begin with a 30 minute pushchair walk at adult pace through the park itself, followed by an hour of woodland play. The walk gives parents some fresh air and exercise, whilst the play session aims to encourage children to have fun through exploring and investigating.
This is deliberately a very informal class. Current thinking in early years education promotes simply giving children time to be in natural spaces. Within the hour of play those not yet walking can investigate baskets full of interesting items such as cones, sticks, stones and household objects. Little buckets for collecting treasure (leaves, cones and sticks), spoons and plates for digging, chalk and toy cars will be provided for those now mobile. All children will be encouraged to explore in their own way and it's likely we will be spending time simply touching the tip of a leaf, collecting twigs, clambering on logs and swinging in a hammock!
Please bring a snack and drink for your child. The park's cafe is open again for take away coffees too. A temporary changing area will be available at our camp area, although there are toilets nearby at the golf club house.

Mud Pies
April to July
Classes will run on Mondays and Fridays. Monday classes will be at Hazlehead Park in Aberdeen, with Fridays classes taking place at Countesswells Woods on the westerly outskirts of Aberdeen. There are two sessions running this term - each of five weeks.
Mondays - Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen
Come and explore a secret wood at Hazlehead Park in Aberdeen! We will squlech in mud, jump off rocks, climb mountains, make things and find out about Spring wildlife!
We meet at the small swing park on Groats Road, over towards Hazlehead Academy and swimming pool. Here's a map. The park's cafe is open again so stay for lunch or a snack!

Session 5: Mondays 21 April to 26 May (5 weeks) - £35.
Please note - there in NO class on Monday 5 May.
Times - 10am to 11.30am or 1pm to 2.30pm .
Costs - equivalent to £7 per child per session - adults go free, payable in advance by session.

Session 6 : Mondays 2 to 30 June (5 weeks) - £35.
Times - 10am to 11.30am or 1pm to 2.30pm .
Costs - equivalent to £7 per child per session - adults go free, payable in advance by session.
Fridays - Countesswells Wood, Aberdeen
From climbing on logs to stomping in mud it's safe to say we're going to have fun at Countesswells Wood ! Play in the dens, make mud pies and find out about Spring wildlife. 
Session 5: Fridays 25 April to 23 May (5 weeks) - £35.
Times - 10am to 11.30am or 1pm to 2.30pm.
Costs - equivalent to £7 per child per session - adults go free, payable in advance by session.
Session 6: Fridays 30 May to 4 July (5 weeks) - £35.
Please note - there in NO class on Friday 20 June.
Times - 10am to 11.30am or 1pm to 2.30pm.
Costs - equivalent to £7 per child per session - adults go free, payable in advance by session.
Please note, the Forestry Commission now charges £1.50 to park for up to 3 hours at Countesswells. (You can also buy an annual season ticket for £30 that gives unlimited access to several woods in the area). 
We're Going On A Garlic Bear Hunt!
Sunday 25 May 2014
Mud Pies is very excited to be joining forces with Claire Jessiman, the Foodie Quine , for a delicious Spring adventure at Dunnottar Woods, Stonehaven! We will be foraging for wild garlic, lighting a camp fire, making dampers, shaking up wild garlic butter, pounding pesto, popping corn and feasting on nettles! Suitable for ages 3+.
£15 per adult and child ticket (1+1). Additional adult or child tickets - £5.
10.30am to 12.30pm or 2pm to 4pm
Additional adult or child ticket - click here to book
Meeting point is the car park in the MIDDLE of the wood - the one nearer to Dunnottar Church, NOT Glasslaw car park up by the dual carriageway!
Weekly classes - more information
Who, where and when?
Mud Pies weekly classes are for children aged 24 months to five year olds and their parent or other carer, i.e. children who are not yet in Primary 1. Younger siblings are more than welcome to attend too - in baby carriers, back pacs or pushchairs.
The classes are held weekly and run in session blocks lasting half a school term, usually around 6 or 7 weeks. Each class lasts 90 minutes and will involve up to 15 children and their adults.

Sessions run throughout the school year and are held in specially selected woods within Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. 

Classes times: 10am – 11.30am, repeated again at 1pm - 2.30pm.

What’s involved?
After an initial welcome to each day's theme by the session leader, the children will explore the wood to look for interesting items to collect. We then arrive at our ‘nature den' (a temporary tarpaulin shelter) to take part in further activities, make things and have snack. There's always time too to play with toy cars, draw with chalk and of course dig. We then usually re-group ten minutes before the end to play hide and seek on our way back to the car park. 

Classes are based around a loose theme each week, and involve a range of fun, seasonal activities, such as collecting leaves, finding out about trees, spotting colours and shapes or hunting for minibeasts. Classes will also involve making something from the natural treasures collected. Planting and gardening usually feature in each session.

Not just for children!
Parents/carers play an active role in each session. This is an ideal opportunity for children and their adults to enjoy quality time while learning together about the environment. Mud Pies hopes all participants will be inspired to carry on exploring nature out with Mud Pies!

How much?
Classes are paid for in session blocks. Each class costs £7, so a six week session costs £42 per child. Adults go free. Payment (online or cheque) is made prior to the start of the session.

What about older children? Can my child’s nursery or school book a session?
Mud Pies classes are for families with children aged between 24 months and five years (not yet in P1). Mud Pies does also offer one-off visits for schools, nurseries and playgroups. Please get in touch if you'd like to know more about this type of activity session.

Thanks to:

- the Forestry Commission Scotland for making their fantastic Countesswells Woods available to Mud Pies.

- the steering group of the North East Forest Education Initiative for their financial support through their Woods for Learning Grant Scheme.


Click here to book a Mud Pies session.


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