'Our NATURAL ENVIRONMENT IS A PLAYGROUND FOR THE CHILDREN'
Diddydots is in the process of creating a new forest school, which allows flexibility and freedom for the child initiated learning. Learning is not about the end result but about the process. Children will undertake tasks that challenge themselves, risk assess their own play to develop awareness of keeping themselves safe. The environment will allow this without putting the child at undue risk or harm. Forest school is linked to the national curriculum and foundation stage. The objectives of learning are set in a different context focusing on the child and the natural environment. Exploratory adventures uses all the child’s senses which is fundamental for encouraging imaginative play, creative development, equality and diversity, ability to work with others and build the foundations for language, literacy, mathematics and knowledge and understanding from around the world.
COGNATIVE DEVELOPMENT Cognitive development within the first four years of life sets us up to become active learners throughout our academic years and future life. Cognitive development needs MOVEMENT to wire the brain. This enables the child to competently learn their next stages of development.
Forest school experiences develop self belief and can include the following;
Den building, Climbing, Following the trail, Making objects, Bug hunting, Potion making, Natural sculptures, pictures, Flower and leaf hunts, Tree hugging and recognition, Knott’s and ropes, Making natural paint, 1,2,3 where are you?, Bird watching, Tool work, Gross Motor skills and stamina for Free easy movement around forrest school, Fine motor skills and development Builds respect for environment and increases observational skills.
Freedom to explore using multiple senses
Investigate and explore natural materials. Learning how to use them in a forest friendly way.
Children gain an awareness of the woodland environment, as well as valuing and appreciating the natural world.
Having the chance to get muddy and wet, yet staying warm and dry while wearing waterproof clothing.
Holistic learning – looking at the whole child.
Loose planning with lots of choice leading to child led activities.
Discovering, identifying and experiencing local flora and fauna.
Children are encouraged to embrace outdoor life, enjoying being out in all weathers.
Children learn new skills and watch their self-esteem and confidence develop.
Encourage and inspire children through the mastery of small, achievable goals in an outdoor environment.
Develop a sense of ownership and independence by using and relying on their own skills.
Identify risks during their play then learning to manage and adapt appropriately.
Wellington boots or sturdy trainers in warmer weathers.
Long trousers (All weathers)
Long sleeve top (All weathers)
Socks and spares
Please label all clothing, shoes, boots, etc. An extra layer of clothes in a bag for changing if your child becomes wet or if cold is a must. Even on sunny days the children may feel a chill under shady trees. Better to have too many layers that can be removed than not enough.
PLEASE DO NOT SEND YOUR CHILD IN THEIR BEST CLOTHES. They will get dirty and the child needs to feel comfortable and confident to use the forest school site to its full potential.