It is a collaborative project, co founded by Niamh Geoghegan, Arran Towers and Peter Haferkamp. Mucky Boots provides forest school programmes for people from all walks of life and from a number of different locations, mostly in Cork. These include The Hollies Centre for Practical Sustainability, Inch Hideaway and University College Cork.
Niamh has been running a weekly Forest school programme for 3-7 year olds in Timoleague, since 2017. In 2019 Mucky Boots began to deliver forest school sessions as part of the primary school curriculum and we are passionate about seeing this opportunity be extended to other schools in Cork and beyond.
This year Niamh will offer training to students through CIT, The College of Commerce and CTL Ireland.
Forest school is an inspirational process that offers children, young people and adults regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self esteem through hands on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment. We believe everyone should have regular, long term access to a woodland or natural environment which provides them with inspirational and challenging outdoor learning opportunities.
We offer a learner centered approach, where participants can learn through self directed play and exploration. Participants will be given the opportunity to develop their curiosity, confidence, self-esteem, creativity, empathy, communication skills, knowledge of the natural environment and ability to access risk.
The Irish Forest School Association have beautifully described What is a forest school as well as what happens at forest school here.
Since 2016, Niamh has been running weekly forest school sessions for 3-6 year olds in Timoleague. These are being offered as part of a larger programme initiated by a collective of parents living in the community. They self fund, self organise and co facilitate a range of alternative, nature based opportunities for young children and their parents.
An opportunity for kids to be kids and explore, create and play in nature. Suitable for 6-12year olds. Takes place one Saturday a month at The Hollies, Enniskeane, West Cork. Click on calendar below for this years dates. Cost €35
An opportunity for kids to be kids and explore, create and play in nature. Camps this year will take place in Inch Hideaway, East Cork and The Hollies Centre for Practical Sustainability, West Cork.
Our recently acquired small but beautiful nature sanctuary, near the River Lee in Cork City has provided us with the perfect space to offer training and roll out our Forest school in schools programme. We are currently working with two Educate Together schools in the city and offering training through CIT, The College of Commerce and CTL Ireland. If you are interested in exploring this option for your school/organisation then please do get in touch.
Activities change with the seasons and we make sure to allow space to explore learning opportunities as they arise. As such, there is never a set schedule of activities but some of what we may explore includes:
Wild edibles and medicines: learning to forage safely and ethically; making teas,medicines & wild cooking on the fire.
Fire craft: Learning how to safely create and manage a fire to suit your needs.
Tool use* and craft: Learning how to safely use tools such as saws, knives, drills, secateurs. Using these tools to create beautiful objects from wood.
*Tool use is closely monitored and supported.
Den building: Working together to build group shelters and learning the basics of outdoor living.
Animal track and sign: Get camouflaged, learn how to stalk like a fox, explore the traces left by animals who share the woods with us and what we can learn from the birds.
Nature-inspired games and sensory awareness activities to build deep connection to self, each other and to nature.
And our course plenty of campfire stories, songs, chats and fun!