“This is the best kind of classroom,
It’s a journey through time and space,
From the smallest seed to the largest tree,
This is a forest and a learning place.
This is the best kind of classroom,
Where the seasons don’t happen in books.
Where the learning is watching and thinking and talking
And everyone notices, everyone looks.”
What is Forest School?
Forest School has been developed from the Scandinavian education system and is about children and young people building self-esteem and independence through exploring and experiencing the natural world. Forest School is a long term programme delivered by trained practitioners within a natural environment.
Each Forest School programme is tailored to meet the needs of individuals within that group and is continuously developed as the children/young people grow in confidence, skills and understanding.
The ethos of Forest School allows learners the time and space to develop skills, interests and understanding through practical, hands on experiences. It also allows practitioners to step back and observe the children/young people in order to then encourage and inspire individuals to achieve through careful scaffolding and facilitating.
Howard Junior School is developing its own Forest School site.
Your child will remain on school premises as the sessions will take place in the school’s own woodland area.
The Forest School routine varies depending on the weather and the season. Forest School will run all year round and in all weathers (unless weather conditions are dangerous). The child led ethos of Forest School means that the children can choose what to participate in, carefully supported and encouraged by trained adults.
Possible activities may include:
Hunting for minibeasts
Natural crafts - making crowns or dreamcatchers from willow, collages from natural materials, weaving with long grasses.
Shelter and den building
Hunting for dragons
Exploring and experimenting
Sessions are planned around individual and group needs and are built upon each week. All Forest School Leaders are qualified through nationally recognised and accredited training, ensuring Forest School is a high quality learning experience.
Early sessions will concentrate on safety, establishing boundaries and routines. As children develop in confidence and familiarity with the environment, the sessions focus on the development and consolidation of skills and understanding.
To view a Parent Guide to Forest School, please click here.