Mapping Storylines



How do we walk through landscape? Do we stop to notice the big oak tree by the stream, or the twisted hawthorn with dried up berries and let them map the way ? If we spend time getting lost and pause to listen, what stories do we hear from these places. How can we map our own storylines of place and have loads of fun in the doing ?


” Once upon a time a person came upon this hole. They put their hand in and thought they would pull out sweets. But instead they pulled out a fairy and it broke through a fence and flew away “


” Theres a troll under the bridge and signs that a tree tribe live there. We spotted furry white chewers in a nearby field. There is water there and yellow flowers and a line of short trees “


” I heard the sound of the waves and the wind was like the howling of a wolf. A chimney came out of the hill. No house was to be found “

” Once upon a time a man came this way. There was a herd of bulls living over there. One bull charged and knocked over a rock which nearly squashed the man but he escaped to the nearest village. His wife came by and thought her husband squashed, dead. She made the trees and rocks her home and the white chewers grazed out her back. One day when she was out she found some hawthorn berries. Known for their heart medicine she turned it into potion and brought her husband back to life. ” 


What is it like when we try and find our way using our other senses. With a group of brave blindfolded volunteers and a drummer we let the sound of the drum be our guide.

Inspired by treasures found on walkabout the group began to make boats and there was great excitement as we launched them in the stream.

Earlier this week I read that “In play it is impossible for the child or adult to know what the ‘end product’ will be- until the end. Activities on the other hand show you a product before you begin. In my experience once we take time in nature we find the freedom to get curious and play always takes over !


Next Sticks and Stones Day on the 23rd March !

Written by Niamh Geoghegan                                                                                                            Co-ordinator and co-founder at Mucky Boots Forest School




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