Home Page

Forest School

What is Forest School?

Forest school is a child-centred learning experience that provides children with regular opportunities for outdoor, nature-based learning. It is a holistic approach that promotes confidence and self-esteem through play, hands-on learning and the development of practical skills. Children are encouraged to develop a connection with the natural world and an understanding of their role in protecting the environment.


What are the benefits of Forest School?

Activities in Forest School :

  • Supports physical development – including gross and fine motor skills, auditory and visual learning and spatial awareness
  • ·Develops problem solving skills and creative thinking
  • ·Encourages motivation and concentration – high levels of interest lead to high levels of attention
  • ·Supports social skills such as sharing, turn-taking and cooperative working
  • ·Promotes the development of communication and language skills through sensory experiences
  • ·Develops descriptive language and encourages children to express ideas and viewpoints
  • ·Promotes confidence, self-esteem, independence and resilience, providing opportunities for supported risk taking in a familiar environment
  • ·Encourages curiosity about the world around them, questioning skills and eco-friendly attitudes
  • ·Allows for a flexible approach to learning through play, incorporating a range of different learning styles


Where is Forest School?

The Nursery School is fortunate to have a dedicated Forest School area within its outside space, developed in conjunction with Warwickshire County Council and Ragley Hall. It has a shelter, hedging and trees, providing a discrete learning area home to a variety of plants and wildlife


What do we do in Forest School?

Activities are carefully planned depending on the season, weather and the children’s interests from the previous sessions. Each session begins with a reminder of the ‘Forest School Rules’, followed by a group time which might involve a story, object, poem or picture to provide inspiration and context for the activities to follow. Children can then take part in a planned adult led activity or choose to explore the site and delve deeper into whatever has sparked their interest.

 Typical activities include:

·Exploring the environment

·Sensory walks

·Mini beast hunts

·Mark making with different materials

·Nature scavenger hunts


·Being creative with clay, paint and found materials

·Creating shelters and feeders for wildlife

What do children wear in Forest School?

The Nursery School provides waterproof jackets and trousers to go over existing outerwear. We ask that on Forest School days you send your child in with their own wellies, hats and gloves – this means that they can experience Forest School during all seasons.


Who will support the children in Forest School?

All staff have received basic training in the aims and ethos of Forest School and taken part in practical sessions. In addition, one of our staff members, Ursula Adams, is undertaking more intensive Level 3 training as a Forest School leader.


Safety in Forest School

As in the rest of the Nursery School, children’s safety is paramount. All Forest School activities are risk assessed and carefully planned to ensure everyone stays safe and enjoys the sessions. Group sizes are small and children are closely supervised at all times. Children are always given the choice of whether they want to attend Forest School or not.


'The best classroom and the richest cupboard is roofed only by the sky.'

Margaret McMillan