Forest School originated in Scandinavia in the 1950s, it is a long term programme of activities delivered by trained practitioners within a natural environment throughout the school year.
The aim of Forest Schools is to excite and encourage pupils through positive outdoor experiences. Children are able to learn all about the natural environment by participating in varied activities and through exploration. As well as all of this, the children are learning key skills such as: communication, working as part of a team, building relationships and cooperating with others. Use of the outdoor space has had a clear impact upon children’s performance in and out of the classroom, especially in engaging interest and focus on specific tasks.
As a school we have created a Forest School area on site. By gaining Forest School status Hexham Priory aims to promote students health, confidence and independence. Forest School is fully embedded into our curriculum and most children in school participate half termly sessions where they can experience the area throughout the different seasons. This ensures pupils are given every opportunity to develop self-confidence, problem solving, self-esteem and risk management skills. All the activities are planned to tie in with the class’ current learning or to consolidate prior learning in different curriculum areas.
Example of activities carried out on a regular basis include;