601 TUTOR: Helen Leaf
What would we be without trees, and how can we appreciate them more? Trees have been an important aspect of our lives throughout history, but are often seen as 'just trees', or perhaps taken for granted. During this course, you will look at trees in many ways, including how they grow, where they grow, what they need to thrive, how they adapt and how they grow old. You will also explore the many ways in which mankind has interacted with trees, looking at the role trees have played in culture, history, medicine, crafts, legends and mythology.
We'll cover many things on this course, combining outdoor time, hands-on sessions, and classroom learning. The course will open up a general interest in trees, to become a wider understanding and appreciation of them.
We'll start with the basics, with an understanding of how they grow and how they 'work' as forms of life. On our walks outside, we'll look at local trees and consider trees with this in mind.
Each day we'll look at trees in detail, such as oak, beech, ash, birch, hazel and yew. We'll get to know this tree in its wood, twigs, bark, leaves and seeds, and will use each tree as a prompt to understand themes of culture, ecology, history and more.
A little exercise for anyone, is this: for the course of one whole day, observe around you all of the different ways that trees are part of your life. From salads to cathedrals and everything in between, do you know what wood that is, or what type of tree it came from? Did you even consider that these things were from trees?
We'll look at how trees are looked after or managed, and different ways you can become involved with trees if you chose to do so, either on a practical level, or simply as someone who has a deeper appreciation of trees encountered as you go about your life.
No prior knowledge required, just an interest in trees!
What to bring
On some of our days we'll be going on short walks to visit trees, so please keep an eye on the weather and dress accordingly. For our walks outside, it's recommended that you wear shoes or boots that are suitable for walking, and a raincoat if it's raining.
Helen is a doctor of archaeology, a skilled craftswoman and has a passion for ancient trees. She is a verifier for the Ancient Tree Inventory and a guided walk leader in Sherwood Forest.
She writes about her ongoing experiences recording veteran and ancient trees on her website https://theoaksofsherwood.com/
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All courses run for 5 days
WK 1 11 Jul - 15 Jul
WK 2 18 Jul - 22 Jul
WK 3 25 Jul - 29 Jul
WK 4 1 Aug - 5 Aug
9.15AM to 12.15PM
1.45PM to 4.30PM
All Day Courses
9.15AM to 4.30PM