We had been warned that it would be an ‘interesting’ drive to Killin, especially with the threat of icy roads, however, no-one had told us how beautiful if would be! Dawn broke as we passed through Callander and the magnificent mountains appeared through the morning mist.
On arrival at Killin Nursery, we were welcomed by Head of Nursery Elizabeth Hancock, who is responsible for the Killin and Crianlarich Nurseries. It is also an unexpected treat to see Wendy Garner again, who had been on our training last year.
After a quick tour, Elizabeth leaves us in the capable hands of her Early Years Educators and the children. Everywhere you look in Killin Nursery there is evidence of learners leading learning and purposeful ‘documentation’ – from the visible wall-planning to the fascinating and captivating ‘photo-books’.
Everyone is talking about ‘the wolf’ and it’s whereabouts. A model wolf, which had once stood outside the recently closed Tourist Office, had been removed. This has caused consternation amongst the children, for whom it was an identifiable landmark. Recognising that this was an issue of genuine interest to the children, the educators have made ‘What has happened to the wolf?’ a central focus from which the learning grows.
There have been letters from the wolf, footprints, and sightings. The children have been investigating by asking local community members (including a bemused policeman) to assist with locating the wolf.
We overhear a fascinating discussion between some children about how high a wolf can jump. There is higher-order reasoning going on here. One boy knows how high his dog can jump and estimates that the wolf is a similar size, so, should be able to clear a fence.
On seeing us standing nearby and listening, one boy grabs my hand and leads me over to the wall. He excitedly points out his map amongst many.
‘This is where the wolf is. This is where we went looking!”
He then proceeds to tell me about all the other maps and who they belong to…ending the conversation with,
“But don’t be scared. No need to worry. The wolf only comes alive at night. He sends us letters then.”
There is a real feeling of community with a sense of enthusiasm and excitement about learning…from learners of all ages! Thank you Elizabeth for our invitation. We look forward to a return visit in the not-too-distant-future.
By the way, Andrew used to be a werewolf but he’s alright noooooooooow!
- Embedded CPD in Aberbargoed Primary (singlestepslearning.wordpress.com)