The Forest School ethos is that everyone one is equal when in the forest and that the leader’s role is that of a facilitator not teacher.
The sessions should be child led, planned but flexible. As well as learning about nature, developing practical skills, children are given the time and space to interact in different ways, developing their social and communication skills, practical skills and emotional intelligence.
Forest School provides a unique environment for all participants. When children are taken out of the classroom to learn in the outdoors their behavior always changes. The freedom of space, the ability to move, to explore, communicate with their peers and the adults in a different environment has a positive impact.
The Forest School ethos believes that
- Children use playing in the natural environment to learn about the world they inhabit.
- Play is performed for no external goals or reward; it is a fundamental and integral part of healthy development.
- It is the very freedom and child centeredness of play that makes it such an effective and comprehensive learning process.
- The Forest School leader’s role is as a facilitator; choosing activities, providing resources, knowing when to intervene and when to take a step back. Within Forest School ‘risk taking’ is an essential part, it is the role of the leader to risk assess all activities.