40 Theydon Grove, Epping, Essex, CM16 4PY | 01992 572535 | info@bramblesforestschools.co.uk

How it works

How it worksForest School is an approach to educating children in the outdoors. An experience in the wild, a process of building self-confidence, self-esteem, of sharing, turn taking and of trust. Group sessions start with learners asking the wood if they can come and play. After a short walk to the site learners begin by exploring the physical and behavioural boundaries, these include safety procedures, routines, activities and hygiene. Once learners get familiar with their site, activities can be extended ad learning enhanced. But before all of this can move forward children need their basic needs met. These needs are warmth, food, drink and safety.

Each Forest School site is unique, as it belongs to that group. The learners develop in that site and begin to feel safe and secure during each session. Before each session a general risk assessment is carried out to ensure everything is safe and the site is clean. Most woodland sites will have a Forest School circle where learners sit in a group to discuss the forthcoming session. Ideas are shared during these times, problem solving ideas flow and children are inspired. Learners then go and explore the site and play in the woods.

When the session comes to an end Forest School leaders usually shout ‘come on in’ to which everyone gathers together in the Forest School circle to discuss what they did and what they might like to do next time. Then it is hand washing time, hygiene is very important following an exploration in the woods. Then it is off to say good bye and thank you to the woods for letting us play.

Each Forest School site and sessions are developed with the help of each setting we work with and are learner led. We consider equal opportunities, accessibility and approach each time we plan sessions. We can cater for nursery groups, pre-schools, reception classes, Key Stage 1-4 school children, children with learning difficulties and young adults. If your group is not listed here please e-mail your request and we will try our best to accommodate you.

Activities

The activities we undertake at Brambles are designed for each group or class as well as individuals within the group. Activities are learner led not leader led. All our ideas come from our groups or from individuals. Where and when appropriate sessions can focus, all bit it subtle, on the EYFS, KS1/2 areas of the curriculum. Teacher’s ideas are always welcome and can be planned into our sessions. Some activities that are carried out are den building, bug hunting, tree climbing, mud collecting and species identification. All activities are accessible and achievable for all learners.

Ongoing Reviews

At Brambles our Forest School sessions are planned with your help and input into the children or young person’s general all round development. Areas of progress will be identified and the sessions will be planned accordingly.

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