Green planet
Forest school
An S4A Group Company

There’s no such thing as bad weather

Did you know that in our part of the beautiful British Isles, namely; Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Northamptonshire and Bedfordshire, we have on average 188 days of rain according to the Met office. That means that for just over 6 months, or approximately half of every year the Nimbostratus (Nimbostratus clouds bring continuous precipitation that can last for many hours) fill the sky and persistently precipitate (rain) upon us.

Read more about different types of clouds here.

It is a very British institution to regularly discuss the weather, it is the basis of our small talk from nanna’s over cups of tea to a courteous morning convo with the postie. It’s who we are, it’s in our DNA. Now if we cowered and hid away, safely indoors in the dry for every one of those downpours we would be guaranteed to be indoors for more than half of our lives. More importantly, if we allow ourselves to go forth regularly with negative talk about the weather, we will be spending half of our lives, well, speaking negatively! Negative words are linked to negative thoughts which are linked to negative actions and the more negativity we allow into our lives the harder it becomes to see the light in the dark, the rainbows, the silver lining, the good in the world – the positivity, and that can have a negative impact on our mental health over time.

Dalai Lama

It seems an apt time to be sharing this blog as the week ahead looks to be a wet one off and on with no precise way of knowing where and when the next rainfall will be. It’s one of those weeks where you might be too warm in a coat, too wet in shorts, very much wellies AND sunglasses kind of weather. There’s an old Scandinavian saying which goes “Det finns inget dåligt väder, bara dåliga kläder.” You hear this all the time in Sweden, it means there’s no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothing. Now when it rains, if this is where we begin our thought process it gives hope. It suggests that yes it’s gonna rain but do you know what, if I bring a pac-a-mac or my wellies I can still enjoy the moment. It means the outcome is still very much in our control, and that type of thought process is not just empowering, it’s game changing!

During Forest School sessions I regularly observe children barely notice that it’s raining because they’re having so much fun. They are in the moment, enjoying life, focussed on their activity. The weather barely gets a look in. If we can draw anything from this message it is that there should be an emphasis on finding the positive and focussing on it. Whether that is an impending rainstorm or one of life’s curve balls. And so concepts like this are always high on our priority list at Green Planet to relay to children. If we can teach them this positive approach to life now and give them something they can work on, nurture, grow, maybe they can change the way we make small talk. “Wow, look at that glorious rain here to water the garden”, “Rain? Quick, look for the rainbow!”.

It may seem like such a small thing to do but we all know that the smallest things can make the biggest differences, and if there’s an opportunity to bring light to a dull day or cast away a cloud from a child’s shoulder I am all for it. I always take the weather positivity approach and when advising an assistant/volunteer/teacher or TA that has come to help with a session I insist that they do the same. I once sent a TA back to school for bringing an umbrella to a Forest School session and standing under it! What starts with weather positivity can lead to a lifelong positive approach to life and that can only be beneficial to the mental health of the next generation.

Try it for yourself, you will have plenty of opportunity this week!

Mr Mud.

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