A design creating a child led outdoor group which supports participants to explore and enjoy a range of outdoor spaces using the Permaculture Ethics as a foundation for exploration. You can explore the full design here.


As a home educating family a significant proportion of our time is spent meeting other families so that our children can play and learn together. However, the opportunities to do this were curtailed significantly after the first Covid-19 lockdown when people were no longer allowed to meet socially in groups of more than 6 people. Furthermore, apart from a couple of weeks during the summer, Greater Manchester has been under some sort of restrictions since March 2020. This includes restrictions that mean we have been unable to visit friends in their homes or gardens. All of these things have had a massive impact upon the opportunities for children to come together and play.


This design was developed as a response to this context. It was something that I felt was particularly important as my son is an only child so the opportunities provided by this group would be the only way that he would be able to socialise and play in groups with other children. The intention was to create a space for children to come together and play and explore in a way which was compliant with current COVID guidelines. In addition to this I was interested in the way that the Permaculture Ethics could be used as a foundation to structure the walks and visits that would be developed through the group – not just as a tool to explore nature and the natural world but also to learn more about the wider stories of the different places that we visited.


First and foremost the design was created to meet the needs of my own family, but once the group began it has been developed in reflection of feedback from the families who take part.


The other families who joined the group would all be people that we knew before covid – some better than others! The participating families had heard of Permaculture and curious to learn more, but none had a more indepth knowledge.


The whole design can be read here.


Liz Postlethwaite

Stage of design
Date of design