St. Andrew’s Forest School is led by our Forest School Leader, Mrs Cunningham. Forest School practice takes place in a specially developed area of our school playing field with a small border of trees surrounding it. As a school, we recognise the significant benefits of Forest School for children’s outcomes in relation to their confidence; well-being; independence; resilience; motivation; collaborative skills; language and communication skills; respect and understanding of responsibility for our world; knowledge and understanding of the environment; creativity and their physical health. This is achieved by providing an open and free environment where each child’s intrinsic love of learning is nurtured through positive relationships with others, play, interaction with the natural world and ample opportunities to participate within challenging, achievable tasks. In addition, children are given the opportunity to thoroughly explore and reflect upon their thoughts, feelings and relationships.
Typically, small groups of individuals (between eight and twelve) complete a programme of ten weekly sessions, each lasting two hours. During the sessions, the children are encouraged and supported to initiate and direct their own learning and explore their preferred learning styles. Through careful observation, the Forest School Leader can then accumulate knowledge about the children’s current interests and what they know and can do, then utilise this information to enhance future sessions.