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A wonderful welcome in the great outdoors

Posted: 20 September 2023

Animal care students from West Nottinghamshire College enjoyed a very warm welcome and induction to their course during a day out at a Nottinghamshire-based forest school.

The mission of the induction day was to reconnect with fellow classmates, look ahead at projects and assignments coming to the college’s animal care unit and to engage in creative activities at the Millennium Green Forest School, based in Orston, near Bingham.

The students, who are all studying on the second year of the Animal Management Level 3 qualification at the college’s Derby Road campus, joined in games such as rounders and a balloon pass challenge which incorporated asking each other questions, as ice-breaker sessions.

The physical work began in the afternoon as the group gathered logs, branches, twigs and moss to build dens in the woodland area. These dens will be used by children who attend the forest school.

Student Enya Roebuck, 17, said: “It was a lovely place to visit. We took a tour round the whole place to get to know where we were. We went over the bridge down to the river in the hope that we might see the family of otters, but they weren’t there at the time.

“The activities we did were brilliant ice-breakers and it was good to get stuck in to den building and creating the bug hotel.”

A large bug hotel was created old wooden pallets, bricks, pipes, twigs and leaves to encourage the wildlife in the forest to seek shelter and make their homes.

Student Elle Hodgkinson, 19, said: “We enjoyed visiting the forest and we got to see a bit of wildlife such as fish and dragonflies down by the river when we were taking samples of water for examining. It was a nice start to the new term before the hard work starts and we start looking to apply to university.”

Animal care teacher Fran Hammond said: “I’m really proud of the students and how they conducted themselves on this special induction day.

“They all worked really hard on the physical jobs in the forest and created some wonderful structures and the Millennium Green committee were equally impressed and have remarked on their creativity in the latest village newsletter.”

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