As we hear the trees rustle in the wind, children exploring the undergrowth for bugs and insects habitats. When we start to think of outdoor learning, forest school is the first thing that comes to mind as a very attractive aspect of schooling.
However, are schools using their outdoor forest school to their full advantage or are they there purely to entice parents to choose that primary school for their children?
What is Forest School?
Forest school is a weekly activity which takes place outdoors within a woodland like environment. The Forest school session is led by a qualified level 3 Forest School Leader who works with another member of staff to get the children working within the outdoor environment.
Which Activities might be carried out in Forest School?
Teacher led activities which you can expect to be carried out within a forest school lesson can be wide and varied. However below are a few examples
- Clay Owl Making
- Stick Mobiles
- Animal Habitat Investigation
- Making Kites
- Tree Rubbings
- Making a Worm Farm
- Making a Birds Nests out of Clay
What are the benefits of forest School
Forest school gives children a lot of opportunities to children which they may not be able to access within the classroom. Firstly just be being outdoors significantly improves a child’s wellbeing and helps to improve their communication skills. Also children are discovering the outdoors in all seasons and are subject to all weathers, they are constantly observing nature, plant and animal life throughout the seasons.
We all want our children to have as many experiences as possible, I therefore believe forest schools perfect for children to be taking the small risks associated with forest school activities. The Guardian sums up beautifully the adventures which a child might encounter at Forest School
Despite the name, Forest school is able to take place within the school grounds or local area and ties in beautifully with many areas of the curriculum such as Science, Geography, maths and Design technology.
Despite the name Forest school is able to take place within the school grounds or local area and ties in beautifully with many areas of the curriculum such as Science, Geography, maths and Design technology .