‘A Forest School is an innovative educational approach to outdoor play and learning.’
I hold an OCN Level 3 accreditation as a Forest School Practitioner.
What are Forest Schools?
“Forest School is an inspirational process, that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve, develop confidence and self-esteem, through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees.”
Forest School is a specialised learning approach that sits within and compliments the wider context of outdoor and woodland education.
1. Forest School is a long- term process with frequent and regular sessions in a woodland or natural wooded environment rather than a one-off visit. Planning, adaption, observations and reviewing are integral elements of Forest School.
2. Forest School takes place in a woodland or natural wooded environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.
3. Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.
4. Forest School offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.
5. Forest School is run by qualified Forest School Practitioners who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice.
6. Forest School uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for development and learning.
The philosophy of Forest Schools is to encourage and inspire individuals of any age through positive outdoor experiences.
By participating in engaging, motivating and achievable tasks and activities in a woodland environment each participant has an opportunity to develop intrinsic motivation, sound emotional and social skills.These, through self awareness can be developed to reach personal potential.
Forest Schools has demonstrated success with children of all ages who visit the same local woodlands on a regular basis and through play, who have the opportunity to learn about the natural environment, how to handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others. Forest School programmes run throughout the year, for about 36 weeks, going to the woods in all weathers (except for high winds). Children use full sized tools, play, learn boundaries of behaviour; both physical and social, establish and grow in confidence, self-esteem and become self motivated.
So Forest Schools will aim to develop:
- Self Awareness
- Self Regulation
- Intrinsic motivation
- Good social communication skills
- A positive mental attitude, self-esteem and confidence
[Text from my training provider Archimedes Training]