Forest School

Forest Schools is an inspirational educational ethos that focuses on developing children’s personal, social and emotional development through regular outdoor woodland and natural surroundings experience. At The Garden Preschool, Hayes, children have access to a range of outdoor experiences with an experienced Forest school leader (Mrs Simpson or Miss Jamieson), who will plan the activities that will scaffold the children’s learning and play. This enables children to build on their own experiences and realise their potential while exploring the natural world.

Keeping your children safe is always our top priority. Daily risk assessments are carried out by a qualified member of staff who will assess the environment, activities, weather, and children’s stage of development. This is to ensure activities are suitable and that the challenge of the Forest School is balanced against the risks.

These are some of the typical activities offered:

  • Daily access to our onsite woods
  • Den making and shelter building
  • Stories around the kettle fire
  • Hot coco around the kettle fire
  • Toasting Savoury/Non-Savoury food on an open fire
  • Walks round our field/woods
  • Growing and maintaining our own vegetable plot
  • Nature hunts
  • Tarpaulin

Principles and Criteria for Good Practice

Forest School is a long-term process of frequent and regular sessions in a woodland or natural environment, rather than a one-off visit. Planning, adaptation, observations, and reviewing are integral elements of Forest School

Forest School takes place in a woodland or natural wooded environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.

Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.

Forest School offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.

Forest School is run by qualified Forest School practitioners who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice.

Forest School uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for development and learning.