Confidence, social skills, communication, motivation and concentration, physical skills and understanding. Outcomes of Forest School - findings from the Forestry Commission Research, Liz O'Brien.
"Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better" Albert Einstein
What is Forest School? Forest School is an inspirational process, that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees. Forest School is a specialised learning approach that sits within and compliments the wider context of outdoor and woodland education. Activities include bushcraft, dens, fires, cooking and foraging for wild food, bug hunting, games, adventures, songs, story activities and learning about nature.
All areas of the educational curriculum can be brought to life in a forest school session, with hands-on contextual learning deepening student understanding and enthusiasm. A specific nature-based ethos and participant-led learning methodology immediately engages learners of all types and has proved effective in many learning environments. Forest School is a long term commitment to learners in an environment which enriches and drives forward their development.
Vicki Stewart is the Wiltshire Representative for the Forest School Association.
1: 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.
2: Forest School takes place in a woodland or natural wooded environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.
3: Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners
4: Forest School offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.
5. Forest School is run by qualified Forest School practitioners who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice. 6. Forest School uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for development and learning.