Connect to Nature Creative Writing Class

29.07.2020

Heavenly Hedgehogs!

Welcome to another week of Connect to Nature Creative Writing. I’ve had a few new followers to the site this week! For those of you who haven’t visited before my Wednesday blog posts are a space to try out creative writing with the aim of connecting to the natural world through doing so.

When we create stories and narratives about the things we are learning it also helps us to remember them, thus enhancing our knowledge of the natural world as we go along.

Last week the class was all about Rock Pools to welcome the summer holidays. This week’s class is all about Heavenly Hedgehogs! I thought it would be nice to write about this shy visitor to our gardens and to learn a bit more in the process. We always have four tasks. The first is aimed just to get our creative juices flowing, followed by two more in-depth tasks and one final shorter task. So are you ready? Here goes!

Task 1: (5 mins) Hedgehogs like to hibernate in nests burrowed under leaves and twigs. Can you write ten words that describe the sensation of dried autumn leaves? Think about the way that leaves sound when they are dry and how they move in contrast to when they are green. The words scatter and crunchy spring into my mind!

Task 2: (10 mins) Folklore around hedgehogs suggests that they could predict the weather and would often move the entrance to their burrow depending which way the wind was blowing. Think about your own home. Which rooms catch the sunlight? Which rooms remain dark? Does one side of your house catch the wind?

Write about the cosiest spot in your home. What makes it cosy? Can you use warm sounding words that make a reader want to come and snuggle up like a hedgehog in its burrow?!

Task 3: (10 mins) In ancient Egypt hedgehogs were reported to have symbolised reincarnation, due to their hibernation and re-birth in the spring. There are two choices for this task:

Either: Imagine that you have just been reincarnated as a hedgehog!!! Write about emerging from your burrow. How does the world feel different?? What is it like walking on hedgehog paws? What does the earth smell like? Where are you? Are you with hedgehog friends?

Or: (If you like to write more factually) Write about a perfect habitat for a hedgehog. What kind of space would a hedgehog like to roam in? What kind of food do they like? How far do they travel?

If you want to do a bit of research to help you out there is a great link here all about how to help hedgehogs, with some brilliant printable fact sheets and activities for all ages.

Task 4: (5 mins) Look through the writing that you have created today. Choose your five favourite lines about hedgehogs and use them to make a micro-poem. It doesn’t have to rhyme, here is an example:

Scrunchy yellow leaves
Hedgehog snuffles and sniffs
Cool earth underfoot
A coat of prickles on my back
A haven for hedgehogs in my garden!

Well, I hope that you enjoyed today’s class! If you are lucky enough to live near greenspace, or to have a garden of your own, dusk is a good time to view our nocturnal friends. Happy hedghog viewing! I really enjoyed researching about these gorgeous little creatures, I hope that you did too!

Please send me any photos or writing on this theme, or anything else nature based, for me to include in Friday’s letters. It is always so lovely to hear from you.

With best wishes,
Emma

All photos courtesy of pixabay

Published by Emma

Hi my name is Emma! I am a writer and artist. I work for the NHS at Converge (www.yorksj.ac.uk/converge) and I am also an MA graduate in Creative writing and am currently studying for a PhD in Humanities. I have been leading a creative writing class at the beautiful St Nicks in York (www.stnicks.org.uk) for the last five years. When I am not at work I'm on my allotment or at Base Camp (my home) planning new adventures.

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