Forest Schools Curriculum
How does Forest Schools support the National Curriculum and my child’s learning?
Activities are planned to tie in with the class’ current learning journey or to consolidate prior learning in different curriculum areas.
What sort of activities will go on at Forest School?
The first sessions will focus on core skills and safety. Activities will increase week on week and may include: games; storytelling; natural art activities; use of tools (if skills and behaviour indicators secured); exploring, nature watching and bug hunting; climbing, rolling; practical woodland skills (e.g. willow weaving); building dens, sculptures; time to be quiet, reflect or talk; develop the ability to observe silently – to look and hear what’s happening around them.
Forest School is more about the process than the activities set. Whilst there will be structure, the classes will also steer their own learning journeys and have the freedom to explore, make their own choices and apply their knowledge and skills.
Forest School sessions seek to consolidate all areas of the curriculum and build and extend knowledge. Here are some of the things we may experience:
ENGLISH - Children use descriptive vocabulary to describe woodland objects and plants, though sensory games. All of these sessions used speaking and listening, key literacy skills such as ambitious vocabulary which then permeates all areas of learning. They will talk and share ideas about how we can help to look after the planet. They will take books out into the outdoors to enjoy.
SCIENCE – Children can look at different habitats and identify some in the school grounds. We can grow plants and food to help us in our school garden. We use our apples from the orchard to bake in our teaching kitchen.
MATHS – Children measure lengths of sticks and consolidate 3D shapes when making the bird house.
ART and DT – The Forest Schools curriculum gives all children the opportunities to cut wood and shape it safely using a range of tools. They will learn how to use a hand drill, peeler and loppers. They will also learn how to lash pieces of wood together and how and why we tie different knots. The bird tables and nest-in-boots will provide an opportunity to apply these skills, as will sculptures for the gardens.
PSHE – We will nurture a deeper bond with nature and consider how much joy it brings us, and how we in turn should respect and look after our planet. In developing the sensory gardens we will consider all children and all needs and how we can create spaces that provide experience for multiple senses. In addition, the infrastructure and design will be improved so that every child can have positive learning experiences. We will seek feedback and make improvements.