TRACKWAYS SCHOOLS

Trackways are pioneers of bringing Bushcraft and Nature Connection to schools in the U.K. Teaching bushcraft and survival excursions for the past 12 years to many schools in the public and state sector across the country. 

 

The programs run from a day visit up to a five day camp.  We have recommended itineraries or we can design a bespoke course for your group.  We can visit your school and work with your students or they can come to our sites. We accept children from 7-17.

 

We offer well rounded programs that inspire a life long interest in the natural world.  These adventures are exciting, challenging and packed with information and new experiences.  Our approach draws from our considerable experience teaching a wide range of survival skills in an exciting environment with care and safety.

There is an emphasis on the methods of instruction that encourage, engagement, problem solving and confidence building. 

 

Just bringing the children in to an environment away from electronic gadgets and confined spaces reawakens their enjoyment of learning, and for those with more hands on learning modalities can give them an opportunity to shine.  These camps increase all the children’s academic results by the growth in confidence, team work and supportive friendships. 

 

We have our own ancient woodland site where most of our training takes place.

 

We offer one free place to teaching staff per 10 children.  Our staff ratio is 1 staff member to 10-15 children.  Our staff our trained to a high standard, are all enhanced C.R.B. checked, first aid trained, and very experienced, both in the skills they are teaching and the methods of delivery.  

 

Trackways has also been working in partnership with Life Wisdoms, a chartable trust, that has supported Trackways to work with a number of schools in dissadvantaged areas of the country.

 

Schools Trackways have worked with: Bedales, Bedes, Michael Hall Steiner, Lingfield, Lewes New School, Brighton Steiner, Bristol Waldorf Steiner, Sir James Barrie Primary, Central Foundation Girls school, Hollington Primary, St Marks.

 

If you would like an itinerary for day or longer courses please e-mail or phone 07801492482.

 

Survival Adventure

 

This takes us in to the forest where we can make shelter from what we find and then sleep in the shelters we have made. We will whitness fire made in the traditional way by rubbing sticks together and safely create our own fires to cook and purify water on.  We will look at edible wild plants and try them out, learning not just where food comes from but also many useful ways to use the plants and trees.  We will make string and glue from plants and craft spoons, traps, bowls we will explore what we need to survive in a fun and exciting way.

This quality of experience builds confidence and life skills. The level of excitement this creates gives us scope for all the skills and teaching to come together in a holistic way with stories, games and hands on experience. This can be for whole days or several day camp outs.

 

We also design day courses on specifc subjects such as Trees, Wild foods, Bird lore and many more.
Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

 

Nature Detectives

This opens up to us a world of exploration: We become Nature Detectives unravelling the mysteries of nature. We begin to read tracks and signs, learning about animals and their environmental needs, and finding their homes. Searching for and identifying their signs, from nibbled nuts to their final track, their bones.Looking at feathers and identifying the birds they come from.
Understanding the language of tracking how to read the earth, unbelievable as it may sound we barely see anything that is going on around us in nature, tracking teaches us how to look and really see who was there , when, and what they did.The nature detective asks questions about what is around us and stimulates curiosity and the desire to unravel any mystery we encounter.

 

 

We also explore trees and plants learning to identify them and what they have been used for through history and what we can use them for now. We discover that we can get all our needs met from the plants and trees around us. We learn to identify them from leaf, flower and bark.

 

As we move from the class room we discover tracking in the field. We also discover that we can expand our awareness and begin to understand the bird song and calls and what this can mean as we move in the environment. We can explore ancient Apache scout skills of invisibility and awareness that both help us understand our environment and increase our animal encounters.

 

 

Living History

 

Our meet a cave man program, brings us face to face with the equipment and methods used by Neolithic and Mesolithic people. From flint and how to knapp it to ancient methods of making fire. Hunting methods and how all the parts of the animal were used and what for.
We discover Bone needles and hooks and depending on facilities and levels of experience we can engage in some of these ancient practices.

 

 
Making string from plants, digging clay from the ground and preparing it making pots to be fired.
Nibbling, drying, grinding and preparing wild foods.
We can also examine the use of plant remedies through the ages discovering some of the active ingredients of simple plants that grow in the play ground.

 

 

We can also build historic structures like round houses, oak framed barns, mud huts, log cabins with the young people either on our site or yours. Creating a valuable and unforgettable experience. 

 

Testimonials

 

'As the Autumnal weather began to set in, a group of 30 fifteen year olds (and their teachers) arrived at the Trackways site.  They had to carry their luggage through mud and in drizzle and it would be fair to say that there was a fair degree of moaning and dragging of feet.

 

How different their outlook and attitude was four days later on the return trip! We can only thank Thomas and his team of experts in the care and attention that was given to every section of our journey – our adventure.  Each pupil gained from the experience, whether it was learning a new skill or new friends, whether it was being part of a bigger group or finding the space to be alone.  The days were filled, but not with too much; the evenings, after the wonderful meals, were filled with stories, games and adventures. 

 

We know that both the pupils and the teachers will remember this short time with the Trackway’s team and look forward to revisiting the site when they are two years older – to take their skills to a deeper level.'

 

CH, Michael Hall Steiner School

 

'The girls are now working or studying at university, their love of being outdoors and awareness of their environment, be it urban or rural was nurtured by their visits to ‘Trackways’.   Some of those young women feel that their experience was so valuable that they help organise and run camps that give younger pupils at our school the opportunity to experience nature in the way they did.

 

Sitting round the campfire, the same young women tell me that they understand now.   They understand that they weren’t only discovering things about ‘nature’, that they were discovering things about themselves.' 

 

ST, Central Foundation Girls School

Student’s Comments

 

‘I learnt to respect nature. Human beings have totally changed their way of living….now we have a luxury life, we have stopped having time for things, we’re always in a hurry and forget to take care of our planet….’CvM

 

‘Being more aware made me feel like I was becoming a part of the forest, not an intruder. I found that if I only listened then I could sense the calm mood in the forest, hear if the birds were chattering or sending out warning calls. I can’t believe how much I just haven’t noticed before. I feel so lucky that I have realised this….’ GW

 

‘I really enjoyed the sit-spot because it gave me a chance to relax, listen and think.  I amazed me how many different sounds there are and how I had never really noticed them before.’ BL

 

 ‘I really felt like I was at peace with the things around me.’ JR

 

‘I suddenly thought, hang on I’m not thinking about making fire. So I pictured the spindle starting to smoke, then willed it to create an ember, and it did.’ CS 

 

‘On the second night I decided to move out of my nice cosy tent and sleep in a shelter. James had set up a roaring fire…. We were really thankful to James …PG

 

‘The fire went out, I didn’t mind one bit. I had a bracken bed with a mat and a sleeping bag that was designed to keep me warm up to –20 degC. I was nice and warm!’ VS

 

‘I really noticed how caring and protective everyone is for each other.’ BL

 

‘I really felt like the whole class had changed…. Every one is more sensitive and aware. We all really look out for each other.’ AS

 

‘….but after a day they tried again and they almost became invisible, one person even laid down in the middle of the path and  others just walked straight passed him, ….’IY

 

‘My best experience was probably one that I will remember all my life, when we went tracking with Rob and Miss Kelly. We got all ‘cammoed’ up with Charcoal and mud and set off’ SG

 

‘I really enjoyed the crafts. I especially enjoyed making my throwing stick with my knife, how making it thinner in the middle makes it spin faster and much more lethal.’ CB

 

 ‘The trip was such an amazing experience for me. My awareness levels are so much higher now..’ WJ 

 

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