Spotty Otter | Blog


Nature journaling – the easy way

Spotty Otter customer service manager and our very own forest school leader and mum of 2 outdoor loving boys, Sarah, shares with us how you can create an easy Nature Journal with the kids. Let me introduce you to a Phenology Wheel.  If you look up the definition in the Oxford English Dictionary you would see: ‘The study of cyclic and seasonal natural phenomena, especially in relation to climate and plant and animal life.’  The essence of a phenology wheel is that it is a circular journal, that encourages routine... Read More


Finding Spotty Otter…

I thought I would put pen to paper and try to give an account of my struggle to find the ultimate clothing for the cold winter months for new born baby to a nearly three year old now. We are a very active family with a Husband in the Army and two very boisterous and ‘full of beans’ dogs. My day consists of two good 4/5 mile walks a day with the dogs and my little girl Thea. The summer months are easy and clothing choice is anything in the... Read More


The World is Their Classroom

I home educate my five children ages 15, 12, 10,7 & 4 who have never been to school. They learn through fun, practical activities to spark their interests in various topics. Between the ages of 0-7 they learn through play and reading lots of books. We take our classroom outdoors as much as possible. High-quality outdoor learning experiences are great for developing key life skills such as problem solving, communication skills and building self-esteem as well as instilling a love and appreciation for nature. Learning outdoors in the fresh air... Read More


How to keep your waterproofs looking brand new!

Spotty otter saw my muck monsters on Instagram and asked if I would write a post about how I care for my kids waterproofs, so that’s what I’m going to do!Firstly I’m Ella, 29 and have 2 children. Mya who is 3 and Logan who’s 1. They are both very outdoorsy kids, they love to go exploring, to go on adventures but mostly they love to wallow in the mud… My eldest currently attends Sheffield’s only fully outdoors forest school, so as the name suggests she is outdoors for the... Read More


A Forest Ranger Review…

Spring is traditionally the time when a lot of families end their winter hibernation and head back out into the great outdoors. After what can seem like an endless cold-weather hiatus, where evenings are too dark to venture out by the time you’ve finished work and freezing weather and gales putting the brakes on many weekend opportunities for outdoor fun; it’s unsurprising that young kids can get under your feet and climb the walls in equal measure. However, as the clocks have recently moved forward and with warmer weather on... Read More


Forest school…?

I thought I’d write a short piece about our experience with Mya attending forest school. Before having children I wasn’t familiar with the concept of forest schools in fact I’d never heard the name! What I was sure about was that I fully intended to home educate any children that I had in the future. Fast forward a few years and Mya was on the scene. We’d made lots of new mum friends in the area and somewhere along the line was introduced to forest schools! Initially it wasn’t something... Read More


Gardening with kids: How to create fun and educational wildlife habitats at home

Here at Spotty Otter, we’ve always believed that getting outside is the best way for kids to learn something new. Lisa Lyons, from home storage and garden accessories Plastic Box Shop, shows us how you can teach your little nature lovers about your local wildlife with some hands-on learning. Over the past couple of months, we’ve all been looking for new ways to keep the kids busy at home, particularly when it comes to educational activities. Turning your garden into your own personal nature reserve is a brilliant learning opportunity... Read More


Faffing in the Garden

The lovely Spotty Otter invited me to write a blog about how I was occupying myself and my daughter Verity (2) during these uncertain times of COVID -19. If you follow my Instagram already, you will know I’m a keen gardener and huge nature lover! Thankfully Verity is following in my wellies, so during lockdown we’ve embraced the slower pace and the opportunity to spend more time outside. Gardening is an activity that can be done anywhere, by anyone, that’s what is so lovely about it. It offers great learning... Read More