NorthwoldPrimary School is committed to giving children the opportunity to learn in the outdoor environment. We believe that taking learning outside is good for promoting children’s self esteem, well being, behaviour, co-operative learning and problem solving. These skills feed back positively into classroom work and other settings.
We run a Forest School Programme at AbneyPark and SpringfieldPark which builds on the natural instinct to learn and explore that everybody is born with. It offers opportunities for children to make choices for their own learning and take and manage risks. Development of these skills encourages positive attitudes and behaviour.
The sessions are led by the interests of the learners. Children may enjoy such experiences as building shelters, woodland craftwork, cooking over fires and hunting for minibeasts. As the programme develops woodland tools are introduced to extend learning and provide new opportunities for risk management.
Making Elder Bracelets
The concept was developed in Scandinavia, and operates on the principle that children of all ages benefit from the learning opportunities present in a woodland environment. They found that by taking the majority of their learning outdoors, whatever the weather, their children became resilient, confident and independent learners.
We currently have twelve classes which experience a weekly ForestSchool session, led by Mr. Howie.
Please do read through the below links for more information on Forest Schools. Once open, click on slideshow in the top toolbar to use interactively.
If your child takes part in ForestSchool, please ensure they have all of the correct kit in school on the right day – it is all for their own safety and they may not be able to take part without it.
ForestSchool kit is: black PE jogging bottoms, school PE top, school PE hoodie, a warm jacket, trainers or wellies, hat and gloves. When it’s very cold – thermal long johns and a thermal undershirt under their PE kit will keep them warm and happy at ForestSchool. The school will provide a rain jacket and water proof trousers.
At Northwold Primary we are firmly committed to the principles of Forest Schools, which form an important part of our curriculum in the Early Years and Key Stage 1 & 2. ForestSchool is a type of outdoor education in which our children learn personal, social and technical skills through regular visits to AbneyPark and SpringfieldPark. It offers children many opportunities to achieve and develop confidence through hands-on learning in a woodland environment.
ForestSchool uses the woods as a means to build independence, teamwork, problem solving skills and self-esteem. The ForestSchool curriculum compliments the topics in the classroom and the woodland environment is used to support all areas of learning including mathematics and literacy.
ForestSchool follows a set of principles that guide each session:
- ForestSchool is a long-term process of regular sessions, rather than a one-off or infrequent visits; the cycle of planning, observation, adaptation and review links each session.
- ForestSchool takes place in a woodland or natural environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.
- ForestSchool uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for being, development and learning.
- ForestSchool aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.
- ForestSchool offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.
- ForestSchool is run by qualified ForestSchool practitioners, who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice.
The Forest School Association website can give more information about the ForestSchool movement: