The weather on Monday did not seem to dampen the spirits of Year Ones as they set about exploring the Forest School area. This week we were thinking about hibernation and how animals keep themselves warm during the colder months. The children set about building nests for their 'dormouse' which was actually a film canister filled with hot water. After creating a suitable winter home, we left our dormice for the remainder of the session and set about having some Forest School fun. Before our session came to an end we collected our mice and took the temperature of the water using thermometers, we discussed the different insulating properties of the materials the children had used and thought about the most effective methods for keeping warm.
Thursday was yet another glorious day in the sunshine for Year Two. The children have really been enjoying working with tools and so this week we used hacksaws and knives to create tepee structures for one of the Three Little Pigs. In addition to our tool skills we also used our maths skills of measurement and estimation to ensure the lengths of our sticks were all equal. The children also created some fabulous structures during their exploratory play including a brick house complete with fully stocked garden, chocolate soup in the mud kitchen and discovery of buried treasure in the conservation area!
Forest School principles were first brought to the UK in the 1990’s from the highly successful Scandinavian practise. The forest schools operate on the principle that children of all ages can benefit greatly from the hands on learning opportunities inherently presented in an outdoor environment. We aim to provide a structured implementation of play based activities and an opportunity for children to explore their natural environment. Building a sense of independence, high self-esteem, risk taking, developing confidence and communication skills are the main objectives throughout each session. Each Forest School session will have a maximum of 15 children and a minimum of two adults including our Forest School trained teacher, Mrs Djiallis.
This is an exciting new addition to our curriculum at Ashfield Park which we are very pleased to be able to offer as part of our commitment to providing a broad and balanced education for your child.