Forest School is a long term learning process that is child centred and takes place in a woodland environment. The program uses play, exploration and managed risk taking to allow children to develop socially , emotionally, spiritually, physically and intellectually.
Learning in and from the natural environment children will grow to cherish and value the world they live in and will grow into adults that appreciate the importance of sustainable management of the world's resources and the importance of protecting nature.
Having fun is an important part of these sessions and children are allowed to express themselves, to direct their own play, to learn new skills and build their self confidence and self esteem. They learn social skills through collaboration and teamwork.
It gives them new opportunities and new experiences out in nature whatever the weather.
Through research and case studies it has been shown that Forest School has many benefits to
the child and the the school setting
- Better emotional understanding
- Improved problem solving
- Rapid increase in vocabulary and communication
- Reading, writing and maths improve
- Unwanted behaviours decrease
Play that is child led and directed has been shown to be extremely important in the development of the child's imagination and creative interests. It promotes resilience, emotional intelligence, social skills, risk management and enhances a child's ability to learn. ( Play England )
The aims of Forest School are set out by the Forest School Association and they state that all children that attend Forest School are:
• equal, unique and valuable
• competent to explore & discover
• entitled to experience appropriate risk and challenge
• entitled to choose, and to initiate and drive their own learning and development
• entitled to experience regular success
• entitled to develop positive relationships with themselves and other people
• entitled to develop a strong, positive relationship with their natural world
Forest School at St George's takes place in the ECO Area at the end of the main playground backing onto Church View.
The school site is fenced off and kept locked during the school day