At Balgowan, Forest School is an exciting, motivating outdoor way of learning that will further develop children’s understanding of the world around them and build their personal, social and emotional skills.
Our aim is to enable children to:
- learn in an unusual, natural and ever changing environment.
- learn in a child initiated way through play or activities.
- learn simple skills like whittling and other tool use, nature hunting, building shelters, sustaining and managing a woodland and building and managing campfires.
- develop a sense of belonging, personal achievement, confidence, respect and trust, working as part of team.
- be outdoors in a healthier environment breathing in fresh air.
- encounter risk, manage risk and develop problem solving skills.
- develop physical skills, walking on uneven ground, balancing, climbing and lifting as well as fine motor skills.
- learn in a holistic way, developing more cross curricular links to English, maths, science and topic work.
- demonstrate the school values outside of the classroom environment.
Forest School is about exploring and experiencing the natural world through practical activities. The children go out in all weathers, all year round, exploring and learning from the seasons and environment changes. The children’s interests along with the varied natural resources at our site are used to stimulate creative thinking, problem solving and skill development, all in the guise of play.
At Balgowan, Forest School builds on a child’s innate motivation and positive attitude to learning, offering them the opportunities to take risks, make choices and initiate learning for themselves. Our Forest school learning environment provides opportunities for children to develop their self-esteem, self-confidence, to form positive relationships with others, to develop a growing awareness of their emotional needs and the needs of others, to learn to cooperate and work with their peers and adults and to develop strategies in order to take risks within the boundaries of safety.