Forest School

Forest school originated in Scandinavia in the 1950s and is based on the philosophy that children's interaction with nature and the natural world is a very important factor in their development.

Forest school at Whitecross Nursery School is an inspirational process that offers opportunities for groups of children to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees. It is a specialised learning approach that sits within and compliments the wider context of outdoor and woodland education.

Principles of Forest School

The forest school ethos has six guiding principles which were agreed by the UK Forest School Community in 2011:

•is a long-term process of regular sessions, rather than one-off or infrequent visits; the cycle of planning, observation, adaptation and review links each session.

•takes place in a woodland or natural environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.

•uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for being, development and learning.

•aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.

•offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.

•is run by qualified forest school practitioners who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice.

What to expect at Whitecross.

We work as a team to transport our Forest School ‘cart’ to Central Nursery School where we take part in fire making, pond dipping and bush-craft skills including den making, transient art and imaginary play. Each session (the children will take part in three or four sessions each) we observe and develop key skills such as perseverance, problem solving and team work which provides children with important life skills to enable them to achieve their full potential.

Please click on a the photograph below to view the gallery.