Forest School

While already having some of the largest outdoor areas of any early years provider in the local area, we are also fortunate to have an on-site Forest area. No mini-buses required here, so lots more time in the forest! We also have a seamless approach to our environment so that the forest school ethos encompasses the orchard, garden and allotment. The indoor environment reflects nature through décor, displays, living things, investigation and creation stations. Quite simply nature is everywhere.

What is Forest School?

A Forest School is an innovative educational approach to outdoor play and learning. The philosophy of Forest Schools is to encourage and inspire individuals of any age through positive outdoor experiences. Put simply it is learning in nature through play and adventure.

How does it work?

Each family group has a six week forest programme building up to using tools and a camp fire cooking celebration. Children in the Dragonfly family (Under three) access our Nature Kindergarten which takes place in the forest and focusses upon exploration, investigation and learning basic safety rules through play and games. Those higher level learners may join our Mighty Oaks Programme after the introductory six weeks and access more sophisticated investigation equipment and our Scrap Heap Challenge to invent and create using reclaimed items for example. Forest school and nature activities also take place outside the sessions from breakfast bird feeding to tea time crafts and harvesting throughout the year.

Introducing our Forest School Team

Sue Evans and Dawn White are trained Forest School Leaders and design and implement our Forest School Programmes. The programmes reflect the seasons and the elements and are carefully tailored to suit the needs, ages and interests of each and every child. Ratios of children to adults is low so the team get to know children well and this enables us to build relationships, confidence and knowledge & understanding of both the natural world and themselves. Independence, empathy, self-help, and communication is enhanced through contact with the natural world. Experiences that help to nurture these skills include; The adventure park, cooking outdoors, story teller and character visits, using the weather - the provision of appropriate clothing enables us to explore in comfort, using technology in investigation work, and creative activities. Each and every child learns that they are trusted, valued, capable human beings!