Foundation stage, Kings Mill
Fun in the Woods, Bainton
What is a Forest School?.
It is a hands-on learning experience in a natural environment with trees. It helps individuals to develop their confidence, their self-esteem and develop their skills in the outdoors. The idea originated from Scandinavia and is increasing in popularity across the UK.
How does it support our children?
It enables them to be:
- equal, unique and valuable
- competent to explore and 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
Where does it take place?
The whole school visits a Forest School provider called Fun in the Woods in Bainton each year,and is developing a regular Forest School session for the Foundation Stage at a local woodland.
We are really lucky to have a woodland in walking distance of the school. Kings Mill provides an inspiring setting for the children to explore and develop their skills in a safe and familiar place.
What happens during a typical session?
The children will all gather on the log seats and activities are discussed. The children will be reminded of the Forest School rules. Boundary ribbons are tied around the trees to reinforce the area the children can use and the shelter is put up for storing the first aid, activity box and supplies.
Next everyone gathers in the middle of the area and plays a hide an see game called 1,2,3 where are you?
Then the main activity is discussed standing in a listening circle. Activity examples are:
- creating pictures using natural resources
- making fairy dens with twigs, stones and moss
- den making
- mud/clay creatures
- meet a tree
- learning the names of plants and trees
The children are supported by the adults as required to facilitate their learning.
Finally, we all gather on the log seats to reflect on the session and find out what we learnt and enjoyed.