on a cold day at forest school a fire is a way of ensuring that the base of the hierarchy of needs is well maintained. one of the staff remains with the fire and often when i’m looking after the fire i’ll invite learners to help me keep the fire topped up with new fuel.
when the opportunity arises, we’ll also use the fire to cook and share what is made. a kelly kettle is sometimes used to heat water for drinks.
we have a fire circle with protocol to ensure we can have a fire safely. with younger learners, once we have seen the protocol is part of the culture of being near the fire, we invite them to learn how to create fire with a fire steel and cotton wool.
over time those who show an interest in using the fire steel are introduced into how to build a fire from the initial lighting of the cotton wool.
a favourite aspect of having a fire is the toasting of marshmallows and creating a S’more. we’ll do this as part of our celebration at coming to an end of a group of sessions. at every session we’ll have hot chocolate, even on the hottest of days !