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Forest School at CKIS

What is Forest School?

Forest School is a long term regular process in a woodland or natural environment. It is a learner centred play based ethos which supports holistic development and promotes appropriate risk taking.It is led by qualified Forest School practitioners.

The concept originates from Scandinavia where young children are taken on walks through the forest following an imaginary character.  Along the way they explore and investigate, take risks and learn together  The ethos was introduced into the Uk under the name ‘Forest School’ in the 1990’s.


What kind of activities take place at Forest School?

Nature is at the heart of everything we do. 

Activities are varied and linked to both the curriculum and the season in which they take place. All activities are underpinned by our drivers:

  • Learning to learn
  • Culture and Diversity
  • Environment and Community
  • Creative Arts and Physical Development


How will Forest School Help My Child?

The ethos of Forest School encourages children to:

  • view themselves as equal, unique and valuable
  • become competent to explore & discover
  • experience appropriate risk and challenge
  • choose, and to initiate and drive their own learning and development
  • experience regular success
  • develop positive relationships with themselves and other people
  • develop a strong, positive relationship with their natural world.
  • increase self-esteem, independence and confidence 


When will Forest School Take Place for My Child?

We aim for every child in Year 1 and 2 to experience all the seasons. They have regular weekly sessions from 1.00 to 3.00pm in half termly blocks as follows:-

Year 2: Terms 1, 3 and 5.

Year 1: Terms 2, 4 and 6.

Kindergarten and Reception have access to Forest School every morning.

“Det finns inget dåligt väder, bara dåliga kläder”

There is no bad weather, just bad clothes.

(Swedish saying)

Forest school takes place in all weathers except in high wind or if it thunders. We encourage the children to be responsible for having the correct clothing for the weather.  You can help them in this small, achievable task.

What will My Child Need?

Your child will need:

  • A pair of wellingtons and extra socks which  will be kept in Forest School for the entire block of sessions.
  • An extra jumper or fleece in cold weather (essential in Terms 2 and 3).
  • Hats/gloves  as appropriate for the season.

Waterproof suits are provided.


Health and Safety

The health and safety of all participants is central to everything undertaken in every Forest School programme and Forest school leaders are fully trained in risk assessment and emergency first aid.  Forest School operates under all the school’s policies and alongside this the following are in place:

  • a code of conduct specific to Forest School
  • a seasonal and daily risk assessment of the site.
  • risk assessments for activities
  • first aid
  • correct PPE.

Some of the activities the children may participate in are ‘higher risk activities (eg. campfire cooking or tool use).  However, these are not available to the children until certain behaviours and boundaries are established.  Children are encouraged and supported in recognising risk for themselves, through real life situations and experiences.