What is a Forest School?
Ethos
What happens at Forest School?
Benefits of a Forest School Approach
Forest School rules
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens at Forest School?

The first few sessions will be conducted in the children’s usual environment (school grounds, garden or playing fields) so that children and practitioners/teachers become comfortable with the outdoor approach and begin to develop trusting relationships with the Forest School leader.

At this stage, it is usual for Lincolnshire Forest Schools to conduct a parent’s meeting so that the parents are aware of the arrangements, what their children will be doing and also that questions may be asked and answered. Parents are also encouraged to try out some typical Forest School activities for themselves, before signing a permission form for their child to attend sessions off-site.


 The first few sessions are always conducted in an environment familiar
to the child. In this illustration, we have used a nursery’s garden to develop the concept of shelter building.


The Forest School leader helps children to become acquainted with the three very simple Forest School rules (see separate page) and introduces the game played at every session – ‘1,2,3 Where Are You?’ Boundaries – both physical and behavioural are discussed and once everyone is in agreement, the sessions away from the setting begin.

The group have an introductory session in the woodland – exploring the site, exploring boundaries, discussing and practising safety and hygiene procedures and learning the routines.

A Typical Forest School Routine.
(Although it should be noted that no two sessions are alike and even a planned routine is likely to change to meet children’s needs and spontaneous interests.)
9.00 Children are toileted and dress appropriately – sun cream applied if necessary.
9.30 Leave setting
10.00 Arrive at woodland and walk to base camp
10.10 Arrive at base camp, adjust clothing if necessary
10.15 Establish physical boundaries, remind children about Forest School rules, play 1,2,3 Where Are You?
10.30 Set the scene for the day’s activities
10.40 Observation of children engaged in learning activities – as sessions are child led, the activities could include: (please see gallery for pictures)
•    Minibeast spotting
•    Climbing trees, collecting fire wood
•    Drama/role play
•    Making shelters
•    Building a campfire
•    Creative work – weaving, sculpture, tree art, photography, etc
•    Using natural signs lay trails, tracking, stalking
•    Sitting quietly and tuning into the beauty of the natural world
A snack is usually taken during this session but children help themselves when they are ready so as not to disrupt their deep level learning experiences.

11.40 Begin to bring the session to a close
12.10 Review the day – a variety of methods are used.
12.40 Clear the site and make our way back to the setting













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