Forest School


What is Forest School?

The Forest School Association explains this clearly:

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

Forest School is an integrated part of your child’s learning experience. It covers many of the subjects that are taught in the classroom but in an outdoor context. The activities that the children undertake can all help to develop resilience and independence.

At Newburgh we aim to give all of our pupils at least 2 opportunities during their time with us to participate in a group of Forest School sessions – usually for a whole half term over two different seasons of the year. It is a wonderful opportunity for children to learn in an outdoor environment set up for the purpose. We are extremely lucky at Newburgh to have a dedicated woodland area with beautiful mature trees and secret paths on our site.

The facilities we have allow us to light fires and use hand tools in special areas and to run a whole raft of other inspirational and fun activities. We believe that it is extremely important for our children to have hands-on access to the natural world to help them to understand the wonders it has to offer.


Where is the Forest School area?

In the top left hand corner of our school field you will see a selection of beautiful mature trees - this is where Forest School is held. In the centre of this area we have a fire circle which is used as the main teaching space and a separate area for using tools.

Who will lead the session?

The sessions will be led by Mrs Franklin who is a qualified Level 3 Forest School Leader with support from volunteers and staff.

What sort of activities will my child take part in?

Here are just a few examples: scavenger hunts, den building, team-work activities, nature identification, using tools to make natural items, mud painting and sculpting, natural art. We are always open to ideas that are suggested by the children taking part. Eventually we might light a fire and roast some marshmallows!

How long is a session?

We aim for a session to be at least one and a half hours (more if possible).

What to wear?

Your child should to come to school on a Forest School day wearing warm, old, comfortable clothing - please do not wear best clothes as they might get a bit muddy!

The following would be very useful:

  •        Extra layers eg vest, jumper and fleece (especially when it is cold)
  •        Long trousers and extra socks
  •        A woolly hat and gloves
  •        Wellies (named) in a large carrier bag

 School uniform is not required on a Forest School day but please remember a change of shoes.

 We will provide waterproofs which will be worn over their clothes and we also have a large box of extra layers (if necessary). We also have a selection of wellies but if your child has their own please could they bring them in (please name the wellies too if possible).

In the Summer months the children will need a sun hat and should have sun cream applied at home.


Forest school can benefit children in many ways:

Improving social skills and communication through teamwork and sharing which helps promote language development.

Improving the development of physical stamina and also gross and fine motor skills.

Developing an interest in the great outdoors and a respect for the environment.

Look at our amazing photos and you can see the delight in our children's faces!