Forest school is based on a fundamental respect for children and young people to investigate and maintain curiosity in the world around them. Forest School is a long-term process of frequent and regular sessions in a woodland or natural environment, rather than a one-off visit. Planning, adaptation, observations and reviewing are integral elements of Forest School. A Forest School programme has a structure which is based on the observations and collaborative work between learners and practitioners. This structure should clearly demonstrate progression of learning.
At Belgrave, our Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners. All pupils will have take part in the 'Forest School' experience each year at Belgrave.
During Forest School programmes we aim to develop, where appropriate, the physical, social, cognitive, linguistic, emotional, social and spiritual aspects of the learner by giving the children challenging and achievable tasks which build their confidence, skills and independence. We also strive to give the children the time to thoroughly explore their thoughts, feelings and relationships which will impact on inter personal relationships and skills. These have been directly linked to learning skills.
We are establishing our Forest School in September 2019 using a small area of woodland within our school grounds and playing field. This will be developed over the next few years to form the Forest School Base Camp with a seating area and fire pit
Our Forest School at belgrave is run by a qualified Forest leader
Mrs Wilkinson and supported by Mrs Tiffin and other staff in school.
Forest School uses natural resources to stimulate imagination, creativity and investigation.
Activities can include:
Woodwork using tools, e.g. making musical instruments, jewellery, decorative items
Using knots and lashings
Bug hunts and tree identification
There are many benefits to Forest School. For example, it can:
- Develop physical abilities and help participants to stay active and healthy.
- Heighten self-awareness and improve emotional and social skills.
- Promote co-operative and group working.
- Encourage children to take care of themselves and others.
- Foster care, appreciation and respect for wildlife and wild places.
- Broaden knowledge and understanding of the natural world.
Safety at Forest School
There is always a high adult to participant ratio at Forest School. All activities are thoroughly risk assessed before the start of each session and Leaders continue to monitor the safety of the group as activities progress. There is always a trained first aider present at each session and a written emergency plan to follow.
What your child needs to wear for Forest School
The Forest School sessions will take place entirely outside in the wood whatever the weather. We will provide a shelter from the elements, but it is still important that your child wears clothes that are waterproof and warm and that are OK to get wet and muddy. Please provide these on a Tuesday in a named carrier bag and please ensure all clothing is named for easy identification. You will have been informed if it is your child's half term for Forest Schools.