Daisy & Jake - Forest School
Daisy & Jake - Forest School
What is Forest School?
Forest School is an inspirational process that offers all learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees.
Forest Schools Are Fun!
Based on a Scandinavian idea that recognises the importance of children’s contact with nature, Forest School provides an educational experience that allows children to play, explore and discover.
With our busy lives, we often lose connection with nature and the calming benefits it can have on emotional wellbeing. Without experiencing these effects early in life, children will lose the connection forever!
Our Forest School is offered to Pre-school children at our Irby Nursery
How do we teach children to keep themselves safe at Forest School?
Listening Stones Activity
A simple but very effective activity for children to focus on the different sounds that we hear when we are outside. Fantastic to extend communication and language and for children to focus on using their sense of touch. Listening skills are also so important for when we are preparing children for school and this activity really helps them to extend their concentration.
Benefits of Forest School
Many schools have now added Forest School to their curriculum and a growing number of organisations are spreading awareness of the advantages it brings. Below are some of the reasons we believe it brings fundamental benefit to childhood development, health and wellbeing.
Forest School helps children to grow in confidence as a result of the freedom, time and space they are given in their learning. This allows each child to develop independence at their own pace.
Activities such as sharing tools and participating in play help teach the children to work together as a group, which strengthens their bonds and social ties.
The sensory experiences provided by Forest School helps prompt language development. Improving communication skills has a positive effect on a child’s self-esteem and is a crucial part of development.
Motivation and Concentration
High levels of interest lead to high levels of attention. Spending time in the woodland is exciting for a child. Children are fascinated and develop a strong will to participate and concentrate over long periods of time.
An increase in outdoor activity has a positive physical impact. Not only does the development of physical stamina improve but also gross and fine motor skills.
Knowledge and Understanding
Children develop an interest in the great outdoors and respect for the environment. Encouraging children to develop a relationship with nature helps protect the environment for generations to come.
What Will My Child Do At Forest School?
We always begin with the same routine – getting ready to go outside – dressing in appropriate clothing, wellies and water-proofs. We gather at a seating circle of logs and catch up with what happened at the last session., what the weather is like and what they would like to explore and do.
The Early Years Foundation Stage underpins all that we do with the children. Forest School sessions run for 3 hours and a typical day will include mainly child-lead activities; for example, we may chase a butterfly or build a bug hotel. Other activities will include bug hunting, mud painting, collecting, counting, den building, bark rubbing and learning about the creatures and birds we see and hear.
How Do You Keep My Child Safe?
Daisy & Jake has been operating Forest School safely for over 10 years and any risks are calculated and controlled. Before every session begins, children are made aware of how far they can explore and any fixed boundary markers. We talk about any dangers beyond the markers and teach children to manage risks.
Children are taught to respond to “1,2,3, where are you?” games that are practised regularly. Staff carry out regular headcounts and children have no desire to push the boundaries as the Forest School environment is full of challenging activities.
What Should My Child Wear and Bring With Them?
Always wear long trousers and a long sleeved t-shirt with walking boots or wellies, warm socks and gloves. Thermal layers are required in colder months and a waterproof coat and trousers.
Children also bring a small bag with a healthy snack and a drink.