Forest School is a child-led approach to learning that incorporates children’s right to play, to access the outdoor environment and to feel success. It consists of regular outdoor sessions in natural environments to enable children to develop confidence through hands-on learning. Forest School is an important part of our curriculum at St Thomas à Becket and something in which we believe every child is entitled. We offer each class at least two afternoons of Forest School every term (12 sessions each year). These sessions are lead by our Forest School leader, Emma Ryalls, and take place in a wonderful woodland setting close to the school.
Forest School has been shown to:
- Increase self-esteem and self-confidence
- Improve co-operation, communication skills and awareness of others
- Increase motivation, self-discovery and positive attitude towards learning
- Encourage ownership and pride in the local environment
- Encourage a better understanding of the outdoors
- Increase the skills and knowledge.
Children are encouraged to work out problems for themselves and take the lead, whether through identifying safe trees to climb or discovering and mapping ant nests. They go out whatever the weather, snow, hail or sunshine.