Greenbank kids share food around the campfire

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Playing with fire? Not at this East Renfrewshire nursery, where going back to basics with wood burners and tools is all part of the lesson plan.

Greenbank Woodland Play has been running at Greenbank Gardens for one year, and now has 16 children as young as three taking lessons outdoors and in all weather.

Now, owner and mum-of-three Karen Corrie hopes to go one step further and teach the kids how to cook food in the great outdoors, with help from qualified staff.

Karen told The Extra: “We’re in the process of building a fire square and are just introducing it to the children, who have had a go at lighting it.

“Eventually we hope to have a fire pit to cook on, but at the moment it’s a ghillie kettle for making hot chocolate and a little wood burning stove designed for cooking.”

This week’s edible lessons have included festive spring rolls for Chinese New Year and flipping pancakes for Shrove Tuesday.

Karen continued: “They do have to work at it — they learn to gather the firewood and that it needs dried, as well how to stay safe near the fire.

“But I like to think we’re bringing up a generation of children who, as adults, will be so much healthier because they won’t be afraid to go out in the rain.

“We’re outside every day, in all weathers, and it’s great because the children get to experience the seasons and engage with nature.

“And they learn to look after themselves in all weathers — they know they’re not going to dissolve in the rain!”

The unconventional playgroup hopes to welcome mums and dads along for events in the future — the only question is, what’s on the menu from Greenbank’s adventurous tots?