Kate Middleton and Prince William Join Schoolchildren for Some Outdoor Learning Around a Campfire
Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis aren't the only ones returning to school this month — so are their parents, Kate Middleton and Prince William! The Prince and Princess of Wales, both 41, joined a group of schoolchildren on Thursday for their weekly lessons outside at their forest school. Each child at Madley Primary School in Hereford attends an outdoor class at least once a week, learning their regular required lessons as well as environmental awareness, conservation and woodland management. According to the school's website, "Forest school is a fully integrated part of our curriculum and is accessible to all year groups, not just building dens but finding out about ecology, experiencing writing in the woods, construction from natural materials, using equipment safely, using knives correctly and enjoying a stimulating environment." Prince William and Princess Kate joined the children in helping prepare food for a campfire and skimming bark off logs. William also used a saw to cut some logs for a tree den — and Kate even popped inside for a look! The outing came as Prince William and Princess Kate highlighted two organizations that have partnered with William's Duchy of Cornwall to raise better mental well-being. The Duchy of Cornwall — the estate that generates an income to support William, Kate and their family's public life — has provided the school a woodland site at Brampton Hill Wood for its forest school for 12 years. As the school has grown, the Duchy has enabled the school to have a larger area to use, and increase the facilities available. The couple have been longtime advocates of the benefits of both playing and learning outdoors. When Princess Kate and Prince William visited Norway in 2018, they spent time with kindergarten kids who are regularly taught outside in sub-zero temperatures. In 2019, Kate helped design a “Back to the Nature” garden for the Chelsea Flower Show in London. The outdoor space was created with help from the Royal Horticultural Society and designers Andrée Davies and Adam White to highlight the benefits of playing outdoors. The garden — which included a treehouse, swing and hollowed-out tree trunk that is used as a play tunnel — got rave reviews from George, Charlotte and Louis. Kate also said in a 2020 chat on the Happy Mum, Happy Baby podcast that she is happiest when "I'm with my family outside in the countryside, and we're all filthy dirty."