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Let the children be free; let them run outside when it’s raining; let them remove their shoes when they find a puddle of water; and when the grass of the meadow is wet with dew, let them run on it and trample it with their bare feet; let them rest peacefully when a tree invites them to sleep beneath its shade; let them shout and laugh when the sun wakes them in the morning.” – Maria Montesorri


Hedgehog Friendly School

What is Forest School?

Forest school comes from Scandinavian culture and involves being in nature and being outside. The ethos of Forest school is that it aims to improve the children's well-being, giving children confidence, self-esteem and resilience through being outside mainly in woodland areas and gives them time and space to develop skills and interests through practical hands-on experiences. Forest School promotes the environment and its future sustainability. Our Forest Sessions will be influenced by the children's interests, abilities and experience. During Forest School children will be able to explore and connect with the natural world, work with tools, play and learn the boundaries of behaviour by managing risks.

We will visit the Howard Junior Forest School site on a regular basis.

Forest school is fun!

Howard Junior has its own Forest School site located on the main playing field in a piece of woodland at the edge of the playing field, the children will therefore remain on school premises during the Forest School sessions.

The Forest School routine will change depending on the child’s interests, the weather and the season but Forest School will run in all weathers (except in high winds) so appropriate clothing is needed. Forest School is guided by the children’s interested and staff are there to support and encourage and create a safe learning environment.


Forest school is led by the interests and experience of the children but some activities your child might experience include:

  • Experiencing the natural world and learning about their environment
  • Learn how to nurture and manage the natural environment.
  • Den-building
  • Bug Hunting
  • Fire management and cooking
  • Tree climbing
  • Natural craft activities
  • Identifying nature
  • Using hand-tools, such as knives and saws
  • Team games

The earlier sessions of Forest School will include establishing the boundaries and learning about the safety and routines of Forest School.

We may also go off-site for local woodland visits or local experiences  nearby but will inform you of these beforehand.

The Forest School sessions will be led by a trained Forest School Leader Miss Newell and this ensures the sessions are a high quality learning experience over a long-term period. The first sessions will be about developing rules, ensuring children understand the safety rules, guiding children through the routine and boundaries. Then the following sessions with be about developing skills and understanding. The sessions will be based around the children’s interests and will be led by the children themselves giving them ownership over their own Forest School sessions.

To view a Parent Guide to Forest School, please click here.

“This is the best kind of classroom,
It’s a journey through time and space,
From the smallest seed to the largest tree,
This is a forest and a learning place.
This is the best kind of classroom,
Where the seasons don’t happen in books.
Where the learning is watching and thinking and talking
And everyone notices, everyone looks.”
Ian MacMillan