Forest School is a nationwide initiative that has its roots in Denmark. It has been used very successfully within the Maritime Trust schools for many years.
Ebbsfleet Green Primary School's forest school is on-site and is a place where children can develop life skills from a young age. They will learn resilience, independence, gain confidence, self-esteem and be able to take risks, experience new activities and challenges.
Children in the Early Years have taught sessions outdoors, learning about the outside environment. Children undertake active learning which encourages confidence, independence and self esteem through small achievable tasks. The children are given the opportunity to learn about the natural environment, how to handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others.
Forest school supports many areas of the National Curriculum, including science, speaking and listening and P.S.H.E. It helps to meet the criteria of the EYFS in a fun way and encourages the learning fo functional skills.
It also supports the holistic development of the child through:
- Health and fitness
- Increased emotional well being
- Social development
- Knowledge and understanding
- Independent learning at the child's own pace
Children have the opportunities to explore beyond the classroom, with child-led learning. They will take part in team building activities, learn about their environment including noticing what happens in different seasons and the importance of looking after our environment to protect the world for the future generations.
Learning and exploring the woodland environment, using tools and natural resources helps the children to understand nature, gain life skills and knowledge of their world.
Our Weekly Routine
Our Forest School routine is the same every week and includes getting dressed and undressed ready for forest school and putting wellington boots on independently. They play a listening game every week and recap the forest school rules. There are planned focus activities each week as well as resources and areas set up for child-led independent learning. The children are able to choose what they would like to do and independently.
Forest School Activities
Some of the activities the children are able to do include:
- Mini beast hunts
- Scavenger hunts
- Mud and water painting
- Using digging equipment
- Mud kitchens
- Shelter building
- Planting and looking after the plants and flowers in the area
The children learn about health and safety issues such as how to use tools and resources safely as well as washing their hands before eating or drinking. The children are encouraged to tidy up at the end of the session, talk about what they have learnt and have a hot chocolate and a biscuit.
Forest school sessions happen every week in all types of weather with the children coming into school in clothes that they can play and get dirty and muddy in.