Wintertime at the ATC is our time for fire-making, harvesting timber, sowing our crops, building fences and hurdle gates. The colder weather makes many of our summer activities unsuitable and we like to keep the children warm with good doses of hard work.
The focus of a winter day is placed on the realities of past lives alongside timeless issues of sustainability and seasonality.
The ATC in winter is a place where children use sharp tools, such as loppers, bow saws and sometimes axes to shape their surroundings and build something semi-permanent.
Our winter days can be tailored to a specific time period or can be a useful way of generally introducing the past. We offer two types of winter day, each of them finishing in a building with an open fire and a chance to relax and ask questions.
"Staff were fantastic - so engaging. I had pre-warned the centre about a couple of children with additional needs and they were amazing with them". Stalbridge Primary. November 2019.
Winter Days covers some of the tasks our ancestors had to do in the past. The children rotate around three activities of Farming, Fire-making and Fence building.
The Winter Day is a day of hard work and enjoyment for your children and they will gain an understanding of the effort and time that was required to live in the past.
The Coppice Day is designed for Year 3 children and older.
For schools who have a longer day, the Coppice Day begins in the RSPB reserve of Garston Woods just 5 miles from the ATC and puts your children in touch with materials sourcing and sustainable living.
We take you on a walk through the ancient woodland of Gaston Woods. After a demonstration of ancient tools for harvesting hazel and a safety demonstration for the bow saw and loppers, your children divide into small groups and begin the physical task of coppicing. Having spent the morning in the woods, we all return to the ATC with our gathered wood and have lunch around the fire in the Earthouse.
The afternoon’s focus is using your coppiced wood to rebuild woven fences and hurdle gates and making fire by friction in the Roundhouse. The Coppice Day is a unique opportunity for your children to experience a working wood and genuinely understand the processes that were so familiar to our ancestors.
The Adult ratio for Year 3 children is 1:3 and Year4 children 1:4 - Please note this does not include ATC Tutors
The cost of day visits varies and is dependent upon the number of pupils booked. - Please note: We require a minimum ratio of 1:6 adults to accompany children attending the day visits, this ratio does not include the ATC Tutors or 1:1 support.
We provide one ATC tutor, and all materials. Dependant on numbers, we will split the visiting group into two work parties. They will rotate between two activities in the morning, and a further two activities in the afternoon; two activities will be led by your accompanying staff/adults, the remainder will be led by ATC tutors. The day will end with a plenary and Q&A session around the fire.
We can accommodate two groups of up-to 33 individuals on site at any-one time. Though please be aware that the groups will be based in different buildings, but will have exclusive use of the site and will likely follow a different programme of activities.
We provide four ATC tutors, and all materials. Typically, the group will be split in half, and treated as two separate visiting schools; the groups will each follow the structure outlined above, for groups of 21-33 children.
We provide two ATC tutors, and all materials. We will split the visiting group into three work parties, and they will rotate through three activities during the course of the day; one activity will be led by your accompanying staff/adults, the remainder will be led by ATC tutors. The day will end with a plenary and Q&A session around the fire.