Forest Schools

Subject Leader: Adam Chwalko

Linked governor: Carol Jones

Forest School is an inspirational process, that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees.

Forest School is a specialised learning approach that sits within and complements the wider context of outdoor and woodland education.

At Forest School all participants are viewed as:

  • equal, unique and valuable
  • competent to explore & discover
  • entitled to experience appropriate risk and challenge
  • entitled to choose, and to initiate and drive their own learning and development
  • entitled to experience regular success
  • entitled to develop positive relationships with themselves and other people
  • entitled to develop a strong, positive relationship with their natural world

This learner-centred approach interweaves with the ever-changing moods and marvels, potential and challenges of the natural world through the seasons to fill every Forest School session and programme with discovery and difference. Yet each programme does also share a common set of principles, aimed at ensuring that all learners experience the cumulative and lasting benefits that quality Forest School offers.

Led by Mr Chwalko, The Arches has recently developed a Forest School area and we are adding to it over time. The concept of Forest Schools comes from Scandinavia and is gaining popularity in the UK as a means of enabling the children to learn in an outdoor environment. Our children will be using our renovated Forest Schools area, formerly a chicken coop. 

By participating in engaging, motivating and achievable tasks and activities in a woodland environment, each participant has an opportunity to develop intrinsic motivation and sound emotional and social skills. The Forest Schools Programme has demonstrated success with children who visit the same local woodlands on a regular basis and, through play, learn how to handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others. Different groups will be going to the Forest School area in all weathers (except for high winds) throughout the year. Children use full-sized tools, play, learn boundaries of behaviour, both physical and social, and grow in confidence and self-esteem.

For further information on the delivery of Forest Schools, please refer to their website below.

The Arches Community Primary School

Saughall Road, Blacon, Chester CH1 5EZ

Nicky Johnson or Sue Wilkins: SEN Contact

Michelle Ashfield: Headteacher

01244 667660

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