During the first week of the Easter holidays, the Chiltern Society ran three Junior Ranger days on their Brush Hill Nature Reserve. Our grown-up rangers, Gavin and Fiona, opened up the conservation area and transformed it into a camp for the duration of the activities. They ran a series of activities designed to show what a day in the life of a ranger involves and were joined by around 30 children and their families over the course of the three days. They were also lucky to be supported by some wonderful Chiltern Society volunteers.
Each day started with a scavenger hunt, which the children participated in whilst walking to the camp. They spotted key species on Brush Hill and learnt about the different habitats and animals that live there. On arriving into camp, they were split into small groups and volunteers led them around the conservation activities. The junior rangers had to identify animals using their tracks and a set of clues pertaining to their homes, calls and individual features. They had to identify birds in the woodland and correctly name them using a picture identification sheet. Each group also spent time constructing a large insect mansion which is being left on site and created a small one to take home to their own gardens.
After a tea break and refuel by the camp fire, they began the basic bushcraft skills section of the day. The children built shelters and learnt fire lighting techniques which were later put to the test when marshmallows were roasted and corn was popped over their open fires.
Everyone had great fun- grown ups and children alike! Cries of “Awwwwww” were widespread when it was time to head home! We will definitely be running more activities over other holidays for children so keep your eyes peeled!