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Forest School


Here’s a resource that could be helpful to parents:

From our Forest School Leader, Jude:
Need some fresh ideas to enjoy outside or inside with your children? The Learning Through Landscapes Charity is dedicated to making lives better through connection with nature. They’re making weekly resources, specific for Early Years (nursery, reception), KS1 and KS2, so useful too if you have older children at home.

More Forest School type activities to follow this week on our YouTube page.

Arlesdene Nursery will use Forest School to enrich our Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum.

Why are we using Forest School at Arlesdene?

Research shows us that children are stimulated by the outdoors. Taking part in Forest Schools children typically experience, over time, an increase in:

Jude Vinton (Forest School Leader), Harj Hullen (Volunteer), Helene Zaghlul (Early Years Practitoner) and Sam Whorlow (Voluneteer)

  • Self belief
  • Confidence
  • Learning capacity
  • Enthusiasm
  • Communication
  • Problem-solving
  • Emotional wellbeing

What will a Forest School session look like?

 Forest School sessions will follow the same routine each week and this is what a typical session will look like:

  1. Meet and Greet – The Forest School leader meets and greets on site at Arlesdene and assesses needs of the group.
  2. Being risk aware – Forest School leader shares any specific hazards from daily risk assessment with group. We practice safety procedures through songs and games and risk is carefully managed.
  3. Idea ‘seeds’ – Practitioner gives an introduction to the session using a story, song, game, activity, special item, puppets, characters etc., to ‘seed’ ideas for the children. The specific ‘seed’ would be selected based on observations from previous
  4. Free Choice – Children choose which activities they would like to engage in, adults may model.
  5. certain ideas and skills to support learning.
  6. Circle time – Time at the end of a session to reflect and share.
  7. Closing – A song, action, story, activity that takes place to signify the end of the session.

How will I know how my child is getting on in Forest School sessions?

Photos from sessions will be shared weekly on our Facebook site and in our Newsletters too!

Assessment (of the EYFS) will happen regularly and will be included in your child’s learning records, to be shared with parents periodically.

Forest School sessions reflect the outstanding teaching and learning which already happens in Arlesdene Nursery. Sessions will be led by an experienced teacher and Level 3 qualified Forest School’s Leader, supported by our own excellent staff and a volunteer.

What do I need to provide?

 Children will spend the entire 1 hour session outdoors, come rain or shine. For your child to enjoy their session they must be warm and dry. Please provide your child with the following:

  1. Wellies
  2. Warm Socks. Extra pair for cold weather
  3. Long trousers (thick tracksuit bottoms are ideal)
  4. Long-sleeved top (2-3 layers for cold weather)
  5. Hat (sun or winter)
  6. Gloves/scarf for colder days
  7. Names on clothes
  8. A SPARE set of trousers, long sleeved top and socks with a plastic bag for dirty clothes to go home in.

Please use old clothes and let your child know that at Forest School they CAN GET DIRTY and you don’t mind!

We will provide waterproof suits so that children can play outdoors whatever the weather. They will wear these for each Forest School session.

Further information

If you have any questions or would like any further information regarding Forest School at Arlesdene, please contact Jude Vinton at