Woodside Festival


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Forest Schools

Picking activities, Helen WalshPicking activities, Helen Walsh

Forest Schools have been going from strength-to-strength offering children, young people and adults regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland environment.

Come along to one of our Forest School sessions!

We run a Forest School on the third Saturday of every month at Millfield's Wood near Carsington Water. Come along and see what they are all about. 

Find all our sessions in the 'What's On' section of our website.

During Forest School sessions, children may take part in den building, imaginative play, arts and crafts as well as using tools to make craft items or learning how to light fires and cook on them. They may play team building games or just simply be in the woodland.

Check out Lola and Ella's blog all about their Forest School session.

 Forest School at Carsington Water, by Diane Davidson.

"I have heard of them but what are Forest Schools?"

Forest schools is about exploring and experiencing the natural environment through practical activities within a secure woodland area. The outdoor sessions take place in all but the worst weathers with small groups (typically 12 children or less) over a series of 6-10 sessions. This regular contact helps leaders as well as the learners to better understand what learners are capable of and where their personal interests lie.

Forest schools is about exploring and experiencing the natural environment through practical activities 

Research carried out in recent years has shown just how much children benefit from spending more time outdoors and within nature. Working together in the outdoor learning environment allows children to develop self esteem, learn to work as a team and develop an awareness of their own emotional needs as well as those of others.

Children learn through play outdoors and gain confidence and self-esteem as they gain new skills and learn to understand their own abilities better. They learn to be creative and to solve problems both as individuals and as a team member.

Outdoor activities teach children to manage their own risks. Exposing them to the wild but controlled Forest School environment gives them the opportunity to learn how to make well informed and sensible decisions when faced with new challenging situations in real life.

Time outdoors in a woodland environment not only increases their physical health and well being but also their emotional health. It encourages children to take healthy lifestyle decisions and to be sympathetic to the environment around them.

Charcoal Art around the Fire, DWT

Charcoal Art around the Fire, Louise Sidebotham