The Forest School concept originated as early as the 1800s in Scandinavia and has developed through teaching movements and academic studies across Europe to the present day.
The approach centres on child-led learning that takes place out of doors, allowing children to experiment with natural materials in natural surroundings.
It is a positive and active as well as long term approach to childhood learning in which children explore new experiences themselves – naturally – and learn through trial and error.
In S. Anselm’s, we link Forest School within learning to many areas of the EYFS curriculum, enabling children to build personal, social and emotional skills as well as fine and gross motor skills. The results are seen in increased confidence and children’s keenness to take a lead in their own learning.
As well as making the Forest School approach an integral part of our curriculum, our Monday afternoon sessions are dedicated Forest Fun sessions that take place outdoors in the grounds and natural woodlands of S. Anselm’s.
We are fortunate to have three fully qualified Forest School Practitioners within our Early Years Foundation Stage Department who plan and lead these sessions.
Keeping safe is a vitally important part of Forest Fun and the first priority of our teaching and support staff. During Forest Fun sessions, additional support staff are involved to keep our staff-pupil ratios low and, as always, our RGN Registered School Nurse is also available on site.
Children must all agree to our Forest Fun Golden Rules, which are repeated at the start of each session. Only when the Forest School leader feels that all children understand the importance of listening attentively and staying safe, do planned activities take place or the group move on to the next stage of any particular adventure.
Forest Fun is a marvellous way to foster children’s love of nature and respect for their environment whilst encouraging them to take responsibility for its care.