Forest School is a woodland based approach to learning and teaching. It gives the children the opportunity to explore the outdoor environment within in the school in a fun and safe way. It provides the children with more opportunities to learn and develop their confidence and self-esteem through hands on experiences. At Christ Church we use our extensive and beautiful school grounds when doing our forest school activities.
The children are given the opportunity to participate in a range of exciting and motivating activities throughout the year. Children will be given the opportunity to work with tools, play, learn, and grow in confidence, self-esteem and motivation whilst developing an understanding of the natural world.
The forest school initiative originated in Scandinavia and has been rapidly developing in England and Wales. One of the reasons for this enthusiasm is that forest schools have the same basic underlying principles adopted from the Scandinavian model. A qualified forest school leader devises a program of learning that is based on the children’s interests and that allows the children to build on skills from week to week, at their own pace. They provide a safe woodland environment for the children to explore, embedded in routine that is established early within the program.
A Summary of potential benefits of forest school
- The forest school program evolves from the needs of the child and includes the child’s interests.
- Children developed good self esteem in a climate of small achievable steps
- Provides a real context for language
- Provides the practitioner with an alternative view of the child and further insights into a child’s particular development.
- Beneficial to a child’s all round development, particularly in the areas of personal, social and emotional, language and communication.
- Underpins the principles laid down in the foundation stage guidelines.
- The forest school experience has been very well received by all those involved in it.
- Provides opportunities for the children to take risks, problem solve and use thinking skills.
- Complements learning in the classroom and can be transferred.