Screen free Challenge – Your chance to win a copy of The Wild Year Book!

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Are the kids bored this summer holidays?  Why not have a go at our Screen Free Summer Challenge! We will be giving away books to the best ideas on facebook, twitter and instagram.

It’s time to turn off your TV, and head outside for some adventures!  Take a photo of your wild ideas and send them to us for a chance of winning a copy of our newest book The Wild Year Book.

If you fancy taking part, follow us on instagram @goingwild1 and tag us in your photos, tweet to @goingwildnet or follow us on facebook on  our goingwild facebook page, uploading a photo and using the #thewildyearbook and #screenfreechallenge.  Tag as many friends as you can (one tag per comment) Each tag counts as one entry, therefore the more tags the higher the chance of winning a book!  Competition will close 31st August and we will announce the winners early in September!

Have fun “Going Wild”!!

Our 10th book – The Wild Year Book, a collection of our favourite outdoor activities, available soon!

We have just received copies of our 10th book, The Wild Year Book which will be available from 5th July! A collection of our most favourite fun outdoor activities, just in time to entertain the children this summer holidays.


You can pre-order one using the following links or

A new dragon emerges in Spindleberry Nature Park in Oxford

Stuart Turner the land artist responsible for creating the Magdalen Wood dragon has started work on a new living willow dragon in Spindleberry Nature Park in Oxford this week.  Thanks to Tesco bags of help and TOE2 for funding, and OPA, Oxford City Council and of course Going Wild for making it happen!

Over the next few months she will grow into an amazing Wild Adventure Playground!  We will be posting photos as she grows…..!

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Under 5’s glued to screens 4 hours each day! Why not balance screentime with 4 hours WILD PLAY outdoors each day!


Need ideas for fun things to do outdoors?  Our books are packed full of easy things to do without cost, without loads of planning, whatever the weather (see The Wild Weather Book), wherever you live (see The Wild City Book)….it’s amazing what fun you can have with just a stick! (see The Stick Book)

Get ready for Tree dressing day – 4th December! Here are some ideas for wild natural decorations…

tree-dressing-3Do you have a favourite tree that you like to visit again and again? Tree Dressing Day in early December celebrates the importance of trees in our lives. We love the idea of dressing special trees, but we believe in taking a natural, wild approach, inspired by the beauty of the natural materials we can find all around us. No need for hunting out things at home or going to the shops – just go outside and discover the wonderful treasures just lying on the ground waiting to be picked up and made into wild decorations.

Go out for a walk in the woods or the park and collect loose natural materials; begin collecting as soon as you can and store them in a cool, dry place until December. Suitable items include: leafless winter twigs; teasels; poppy seedheads; tree seeds, such as acorns, beech mast or sycamore seeds; fir and pine cones; crab apples; rose hips; cotoneaster, holly and hawthorn berries; greenery from ivy, holly and other evergreen trees; mistletoe; feathers.

The challenge is to make natural decorations by fixing your finds together with wire, string, raffia, ribbons and glue. We hope these pictures might provide some ideas and inspiration for a natural approach to decorating trees for Tree Dressing Day.

Re-leafing the trees

Collect autumn leaves and dry them. On tree dressing day, re-leaf the trees in leaves again, hanging your natural leaf collection among the branches. You could even write tree messages and stories on each leaf.


Leaf Bunting

Thread a long piece of wool onto a large needle, such as a sail needle. Sew the wool through the coloured leaves in a running stitch. For added contrast, sew different coloured leaves on top of each other.


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Tread stalks together, rather like in a daisy chain. Place a leaf with a long stalk on a hard surface such as a chopping board. Roll the stalk as flat as you can with a rolling pin or perhaps a pencil or a biro. Make a split near the end of a flattened stalk using the pointed end of a biro or a cocktail stick. Repeat with more long-stalked leaves. Thread the leaves together in a long chain by pushing the stalks through the splits. Alternatively thread them on a piece of wool using a darning needle



Ice bunting

When the world sparkles with cold, try out this ice bunting, or make it in the deep freeze if the temperatures are not low enough. How do the icy shapes change as the weather freezes and thaws

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  • Find a few cookie cutters and some shallow plastic boxes or metal baking trays.
  • Go outside and pour water into each container to a depth of about 1cm/0.5inch. Add a few drops of food colouring if you wish. Place cookie cutters in some of the baking trays. Arrange a few natural treasures in each shape.
  • Cut some lengths of thin wire, twisting one end of each length. Place a wire in each shape, with the twisted end in the water and the other end hanging over the edge.
  • Leave to freeze overnight, and then use some warm water to remove the ice from the containers. Tie a line of string around a tree and then hang the ice bunting along the string.

Balloon ice baubles

These beautiful ice baubles would be a great way to attract attention to your favourite tree!

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  • Curl one end of a length of fine wire into a small spiral and then feed the spiral end down inside an un-inflated balloon. The other end of wire should be sticking out of the neck of the balloon.
  • Place the balloon over the spout of a tap and fill with water. For coloured baubles, add a couple of drops of food colouring.
  • Remove the balloon from the tap and either clip a peg over the open end of the balloon, or tie the end with thread.
  • Hang outside on to freeze. Carefully cut off the balloon to reveal an ice bauble hanging from the thin wire.

Safety Tips (for the tree) – Take care not to damage the tree in any way. Don’t use nails or anything that might interfere with its growth. You may need to get permission to dress a tree.

For more ideas, please see our series of Going Wild books – and please send us photos of your wild decorations!

1 year to go!

Add your voice to the Tree Charter and help create a future in which trees and people stand stronger together:

We need your help NOW! Vote for our Dragon in Tesco stores


Following on from the huge success of our living Hazel Dragon in Magdalen Woods, Going Wild have teamed up with Jane Gallagher from OPA, Julian Cooper Oxford City council and Stuart Turner to make another huge dragon, this time woven from living willow in Spindleberry Nature reserve in Blackbird Leys, Oxford.

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Stuart Turner, the land artist who created the first Magdalen wood dragon will also bring this dragon alive so …….

She will be enormous, she will be playful and she will be awesome!  

To make this possible we applied for a grant and are thrilled to say our project has been shortlisted for a public vote in Tesco’s #BagsofHelp initiative!

To win the top prize we need you to vote for us in store!

You can vote in Tesco stores 31st October – 13th November on who should receive the £12,000, £10,000 and £8,000 awards.

Bags of Help offers community groups and projects in each of Tesco’s 416 regions across the UK a share of revenue generated from the 5p charge levied on single-use carrier bags. 

Follow the link to see the Oxford Mail’s article all about it.