Hello, my name is Mark Redford and at Nest in the Woods Community Interest Company, we run Forest School sessions in a variety of schools across Warrington and Cheshire. We also run a fully outdoor pre-school, after school clubs and Den in the Woods Ofsted registered holiday club. In addition, we can provide you with training on getting children outside with practical ideas and the reasoning behind this form of outdoor education. Our team has lots of experience delivering forest school and outdoor education opportunities to children of all ages, and are experienced in many aspects of special education needs. We have our own Ofsted registered outdoor pre-school, Nest in the Woods, which opened September 2015.
Starting November 2016, we also have a dedicated woodland in Adlington, near Macclesfield, formerly known as Wacky Woods.
Forest school is a holistic approach to learning where the learner is central to the process which usually takes place in a calming woodland environment. The forest school approach is to draw on theories of learning such as learning styles, schemas and multiple intelligences, to work on the learners’ emotional intelligence so that they are better able to become competent independent learners. This process takes place regularly over an extended period of time with low staff to child ratios.
The children will be welcomed into the woods where they can lead their own learning and follow their interests. They will be offered activities tailored to the environment in the woods, their current levels of ability and knowledge and related to their interests. They will have opportunities to complete small achievable tasks which lead to them achieving remarkable things. They will learn aspects of bushcraft such as shelter building, tool use, using fires and whittling. They will assist in preparing their own snacks and hot drinks. They will become familiar with and appreciate the nature around them and they will practice social skills, support one another and meet theirs and other’s needs.
Forest School is an outdoor learning experience in all weathers and people taking part thoroughly enjoy getting dirty. They will get muddy hands, muddy faces, muddy clothes and muddy wellies, it is all part of the fun and mud is good – it has been shown to give our immune system a boost!