Forest school began in Scandinavia and has been developing in the UK for the last twenty years. Forest school supports holistic growth and is a student-led learning process. It develops confidence and self-esteem through a learner-inspired, hands-on experience in a natural setting.
In our forest school sessions, we often visit local woodlands learning about our environment and sustainability. We are lucky enough to have our own forest school area on site with fire pits, tools, bushcraft, woodworking, a greenhouse and a pond.
Forest school creates a non-judgmental environment for learners to take risks and grow to overcome them. Forest school helps participants to become resilient, creative, independent learners.
Our young people lead their own exploration in Forest School, and so every session and every experience is personalised to meet the needs of all our pupils. They will help plan sessions and have a huge input in the development of our site. There is the possibility for managed risk this could be physical such as fire lighting or climbing, or emotional such as trying new ways of working. At Forest School, as well as learning many new practical skills, the young people will use their Forest School sessions to look at areas of self-development they would like to improve on for life after Ethos College.
Forest Schools help young people to
- increase their self-awareness and self-esteem
- build empathy
- improve and maintain their physical and mental health
- give them the opportunity to work with other young people, developing the essential social skills for collaboration and teamwork
- develop leadership skills
- Improve self-regulation
- allow them to increase their confidence by developing new skills
- promote their imagination, independence and creativity to improve their skills in the classroom
- connect with nature and develop an understanding of the natural world
- build resilience through risk-taking and challenge, problem-solving, and dealing with new situations
- learning to accept failure as part of the learning process and developing the ability to persevere
- learn about their environment and the wider community.