At Cottontails we make regular visits to the woods alongside the Recreation Ground. The children love exploring the woodland environment in all weathers and seasons to engage in motivating and achievable tasks and activities. They work with tools, play, learn both physical and social boundaries of behaviour, grow in confidence, self-esteem and motivation whilst developing an understanding of the natural world.
The Forest School is a unique educational experience and process that offers children hands-on learning experiences in a woodland environment. It is a concept that originated in Denmark where it was found that children who had attended a forest pre-school then arrived at school with strong social and communication skills, had the ability to work in groups effectively, generally had high self-esteem and a confidence in their own abilities. These foundations helped them to raise their academic achievements.
As a Forest School we encourage children to:
· develop personal and social skills
· work through practical problems and challenges
· use tools to create, build or manage
· discover how they learn best
· pursue knowledge that interests them
· learn how to manage failures
· build confidence in decision making and evaluating risk
· develop practical skills
· understand the benefits of a balanced and healthy lifestyle
· explore connections between humans, wildlife and the earth
· regularly experience achievement and success
· reflect on learning and experiences
· develop their language and communication skills
· improve physical motor skills
· become more motivated
· improve their concentration skills
For more information visit the Forest School Learning Initiative.