Let’s explore together…

@ Kirrie Dumplings Outdoor Tots

A space where our babies and toddlers can explore and play together.

Kirrie Dumplings Outdoor Tots group invites the youngest members of our community outdoors and into nature.

What is Kirrie Dumplings Outdoor Tots?

Kirrie Dumplings is a parent and toddler group based at the Community Garden at St. Mary’s Field in Kirriemuir, and is partly based on the Forest School methodology which is a “child-centred inspirational learning process, that offers opportunities for holistic growth through regular sessions. It’s a long-term program that supports play, exploration and supported risk taking. It develops confidence and self-esteem through learner inspired, hands-on experiences in a natural setting.”*

At our setting, the offering is the same each week, encouraging familiarity with the place and therefore allowing the children to come straight in and start playing. These include a loose parts play area using wooden items, a mud kitchen, a story corner and a nature craft station, all of which encourage exploration, imaginative play and sensory play.

The Details

Day: Friday

Time: 9.30 – 11am

Age Range: 0-5 years

Cost: FREE

Location: Community Garden, West Hillbank, Kirriemuir, DD8 4HX.

Contact Erica on 07400 927213 or via the Kirrie Dumplings Facebook page for more details.

What Happens at Kirrie Dumplings?

At each session, we take the children on a nature walk where they can explore the natural surroundings including native trees, shrubs and plants, long grass, uneven ground (great for improving balance and fine-tuning gross motor skills!), bugs and beasties, and lots of mud!

Usually our nature walks have a purpose, such as collecting leaves or sticks for our nature craft activity. We try to provide a different craft activity each week, using items found around us at the garden, and as few man-made items as possible. Our nature walks allow the children to learn about the world around them and discover the local flora and fauna.

For Our Children and The Environment

Fostering a love of the outdoors and our natural environment should begin when we are babies. At Kirrie Dumplings, we are nurturing the next generation of environmental ambassadors and showing them the wonder of nature. There’s no need to wait until children can verbally identify the names of trees; children from the youngest age show awe and wonderment at the little discoveries they make in nature – a teeny tiny snail on a rock, or the funny bumps of wasp galls on the underside of an oak leaf. These experiences will stay with them as they grow. Children can teach us a lot about nature through their innocent enthusiasm and it’s inspiring and humbling to be able to spend time outdoors with them.

Benefits of Outdoor Play

The benefits of unstructured play in the outdoors during the early years of childhood are abundant. Sadly, modern society is not set up to allow children easy access to the outdoors, despite the health and developmental benefits of being outdoors and in nature for all ages. In the early years, outdoor play is vital to support the development of fine motor skills; develop a sense of independence, encourage an active lifestyle, develop good social skills, teach about risk and develop an appreciation for the natural world.

*https://forestschoolassociation.org/what-is-forest-school/

I want to bring my child to Kirrie Dumplings!

New families are always welcome at Kirrie Dumplings. The group runs weekly on a Friday from 9.30am – 11am, term-time only. If you’d like to come along for the first time, please contact Erica beforehand. You can do this via the Kirrie Dumplings Facebook page or by giving her a call on 07400 927213.

Attending the group

This is our favourite group to go to! Me and my son always have a great time and Erica always has something fun planned.

Dave & Ari

Attending the group

A great way to end the week, meeting up with like minded people who love the outdoors. You are always ensured of a warm welcome from Erica, the session starting with free play including mud kitchen, story corner and wood play then moving on with a variety of activities include scavenger hunts usually leading on to a craft activity. 

I would definitely recommend coming along – hopefully see you there soon!

Thomas' Gran

Attending the group

Erica has created such a welcoming space at Pathhead with the Tots group. My almost 2 year old and I really enjoy spending time with others outside, taking part in the nature-inspired crafts, and visiting the hens and horses. It’s a lovely, friendly group, and there are always a few different activities set up.

Kharis & Rowan

Get in Touch

Together we can make good choices and live better, join Sustainable Kirriemuir!

If you would like to know more about what we are doing please get in touch. We are always looking for new members to join our organisation. If you have particular knowledge around climate change issues, or growing, making and mending skills you’d like to share, or just want to know more, we want to hear from you. Everyone is welcome, together we can make a difference.