FAQs and Policies
What is a Forest School?
Forest School is an inspirational process, that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees. Forest School is a specialised learning approach that sits within and complements the wider context of outdoor and woodland education.
Forest School is a long-term process of regular sessions, rather than a one-off or infrequent visits; the cycle of planning, observation, adaptation and review links each session. It takes place in a woodland or natural environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world. The approach uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for being, development and learning. Forest school aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners. It offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves. (Ref: https://www.forestschoolassociation.org/)
What are the benefits of Forest School?
The benefits of Forest school include:
- Builds confidence and independence
- Development of Self esteem
- Builds language
- Increases skills in Collaboration, resilience and empathy
- Learn to care for, manage and understand the natural environment
- Develops Investigation & exploration
- Increases creativity and imagination
- Facilitates physical development
- Allows controlled risk-taking
- Offers moments of awe and wonder
- Mental health benefits
- Learn new skills
What should we wear?
The forest school philosophy is “There is no such thing as bad weather; just bad clothing.” It’s is important to dress for the seasons. It’s important at parent and child groups not to forget yourself as the adult. It’s a much more pleasurable experience for you if you are warm and dry too.
Layers are important and can be added or removed as appropriate; thermal under layers are particularly useful in winter. It is important in the winter to have a good pair of warm waterproof wellies/boots coupled with multiple pairs of warm socks. Cold feet can be a real issue to little ones. Children should also wear waterproofs/all in one waterproof suits; snowsuits are particularly good in winter as they are both insulating and waterproof. Long trousers over thermal base layers will keep warmth in. A warm insulating hat and waterproof gloves are great to allow the children to explore and stay warm and dry. In winter it’s great to come prepared with a change of clothes and a big reusable bag (such as an Ikea shopping bag), It’s a great way to contain all the muddy garments when changing them into their dry clean clothing for their journey home.
Waterproof walking boots/shoes are a great option for footwear during the summer. Children can get so much more grip in these and can run, jump, explore confidently rather than wellies, which can be slippery and cumbersome. We recommend children still wear long trousers and top even in the summer, to protect their skin from scratches and stings. The temperature in the woodland is always a little cooler in the shade of the trees even on hot days. A sun hat and gardening gloves are also useful.
What do we need to bring?
We provide warm drinks and a campfire snack at all sessions. However, we recommend that you bring any additional snacks your child may need and a water bottle to keep hydrated. Having a clean, dry set of clothes in your car for after the session is always helpful as the children and grownups often get dirty and mucky….it’s all part of the experience!
What happens if the weather is bad?
Wild Beginnings operates in every season and weather. Sessions will only be cancelled if there is extreme weather conditions forecast e.g. high wind, snow/extreme cold or lightening storms. In these circumstances, you will be notified by 7pm the day before to confirm cancellation. We also reserve the right to cancel sessions due to staff illness.
Where do we meet?
We meet 15 minutes before the start of the session at our car park at New Barn Farm, Larkbeare Road EX5 2RX. If you have any issues/problems just call Gabby on: 07963988006
What toilet/changing facilities are there?
We have a long drop composting toilet in the forest; we ask that all nappies and sanitary items are taken from the forest rather that thrown down the toilet. There are plenty of shady spots and a forest shelter to find a quiet place to change nappies. The babies are usually transfixed on the woodland canopy so it makes nappy changes a learning experience for them!
Policies, Terms and Conditions
Wild Beginnings are located at Beacon Cross Copse, Talaton, Exeter.
Send us a Message
Call Us at: 07963988006
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