Forest School enriches the curriculum at Ravenscote by linking with learning that takes place inside the classroom. Forest School sessions provide a challenging and rich learning environment where pupils can continue to explore the topics they are learning in class through completing activities that encourage the development of key transferable skills including resilience, team work and problem solving.
The aim of Forest School is to give Ravenscote pupils the opportunity to engage with nature in a way that enriches their learning and enables personal development. Through Forest School sessions children will:
- Develop confidence and build selfesteem through engaging with managed risks.
- Work collaboratively with one another.
- Develop personal, social and emotional skills.
- Gain respect for the environment and outdoor spaces.
- Guide the learning through exploring their own interests.
Implementing Forest School at Ravenscote will help our pupils to grow as learners and as well-rounded individuals. Skills they learn and develop in forest school sessions such as overcoming challenges, managing risks and working collaboratively will be transferred into the classroom helping every child to achieve their best whilst at Ravenscote. Pupils will develop respect for the environment and community in which they live, work to keep it safe for the future and leave Forest School equipped and ready with the skills they need to flourish.
Forest School sessions will take place once a week with Y3 pupils and will enrich their connected curriculum learning through providing strong links to the texts they are exploring in class. By having all Y3 pupils taking part in forest school, we are able to ensure that every child has the opportunity to embrace all the opportunities forest school has to offer during their time at Ravenscote.
Under the guidance of a fully qualified Forest school professional, pupils will be able to experience nature in a hands on, safe and supported environment. At Ravenscote we are lucky to have a variety of outdoor learning spaces including wooded areas, a pond and large open spaces. Through embracing these environments and allowing children to explore them in a safe way will keep them engaged in their learning, enrich their experiences and enable every child to excel by learning at a pace led by them. Some of the activities in forest school may include:
- Field study minibeast hunts, tree and plant identification, treasure hunts based on senses, collecting ingredients for potions.
- Bushcraft Shelter building, whittling, campfires, knot tying.
- Teambuilding blindfold games, sharing of equipment, team games.
- Conservation Planting new trees, creating minibeast homes, coppicing, maintaining forest school areas by looking after pathways and litter picking.
- Physical play Climbing, lifting and building.
The structure of a lesson:
- Get dressed in the forest school suits.
- Warm up game, teambuilding.
- Introduction to the session, key skills that need to be taught.
- Main activity carried out in the nature trail.
- Review activity.
Reflection and completion of skills map.
Following taking part in the Forest School programme pupils have demonstrated that they can transfer skills learnt in Forest School into the classroom setting. Pupils have proven to be more resilient learners who are better equipped to work well within a team to complete a learning task. Pupils leave the final forest school session being able to reflect on the progress they have made in the key areas of teamwork, problem solving and overcoming challenges.
Forest School helps to develop respectful and responsible pupils. Throughout the sessions, pupils have shown a great respect for the natural environment, happily dismantling what they have made in order to return the woods to it’s natural state, as well as a respect for one another which is displayed through the rewards they present to each other in the final session. This sense of respect helps to build unity among the members of each class.
Please click here to access our Forest School Policy document.
"My favourite part of Forest School was making my forest friend, I take my forest friend with me when I go on walks at home!" PCR, Year 3.
"I loved learning to use a flint and steel to light cotton wool because I had never done it before and it was exciting!" TP, Year 3.
"It was lots of fun building a den with my friends, I like learning how to survive outside!" KJ, Year 3.
The following useful websites may aid with your child's learning.
Book recommendations to support the subject.