Forest Schools 2021-2022
We started off our forest school journey by exploring our wonderful forest school area. We talked about what we could see, hear and feel. We noticed that some of the leaves had started changing colour and talked about Autumn, the different colours we could see and the changes that were starting to take place.
We listened to the story ‘Room on the Broom’ during our next session. When we got to the end of the story we noticed that the witch had left us instructions on how to make our very own magic wand. How exciting! First we had to find a stick that was not too big or too small. As we had been learning about size in Maths we knew exactly what we were looking for. We measured the stick using our forearm from our fingers to our elbows, that was the perfect size and helped us to decide if the stick we had chosen was too big or too small. Then we had to find a big leaf and a small leaf, the instructions told us this is what made the wands magic work. We attached them to our wands and wrapped pipe cleaners around them. Then we made our own spells turning our friends and teachers into frogs, monkeys, robots and much more.
As we were learning about bonfire night in Nursery, in Forest School we learned about fire safety around the fire pit. We sang fire safety songs and made smores. They were delicious.
We read the story ‘We’re going on a leaf hunt’ and decided to go on our very own leaf hunt. We read the story on our way to the woods and climbed over mountains, went through tunnels and forests and rowed over lakes. We all joined in with the words in the book, used our imaginations and the story really came to life. On our journey we noticed that more of the leaves had started to change colour, we collected as many different coloured leaves as we could just like in the book and made our very own leaf crowns. They looked amazing.
In Nursery we have been reading the story ‘We’re going on an elf chase’. We took part in our own elf chase in the woods and around the school grounds. Each elf gave us a clue to find the next elf. When we had found all of the elves we put them in order from 1 to 5 and found a delicious reward for completing the challenge.
This week we have been reading the story ‘The Gruffalo’. We went to the woods and on the way found mouse who told us that some of the animals from the story needed our help. First we found snake who told us that his logpile house had been destroyed and he needed our help to re-build it. We all worked together to find some sticks and built him a wonderful new house. Next we found fox who needed us to dig him an underground house. After that we met owl who told us that the Gruffalo was hiding in the woods. We went into the woods but could not find the Gruffalo. We found some pictures and described what we could see such as ‘purple prickles all over his back’. We worked out that it was a puzzle and put all of the pieces back together to make the Gruffalo!
As part of our work on Easter we read the story ‘We’re going on an egg hunt’. We decided to go for our own egg hunt, lots of us were very excited as we had never done an egg hunt before. We had to find patterned eggs and used positional language to describe where we found them such as on top of the hill and under the pipe. When we had finished the egg hunt we talked about the pattern on our egg and matched them the the pictures.
Forest Schools 2017-2018
Please check in following each session to see what we’ve been up to during our time at forest schools.
Nuts about Autumn
Session 1 – Foraging for colour
We explored the area, found some amazing coloured leaves, sang an autumn song, collected some beautiful coloured flowers and blackberries. Wait until tomorrow to see what we do with them. The children also started a game of hide and seek all by themselves…wow! We listened to the Gruffalo during story time. Such a busy morning!
Session 2 – We’re going on a bug hunt!
Calvin-John found a lady bird in the book he was reading at lunch time so we decided to go on a bug hunt to see if we could find any. We found lots of insects but sadly no ladybirds… we think they may have found somewhere warm to huddle in tight for the cold months. We were very good at finding other insects and looking at them up close with our very own BUG WINDOW and magnifying glasses.
Session 3 – Pounding Colour from Nature
What will happen when you pound on fabric that is over a leaf, berries and flowers? We went in search of beautiful colours and the children were fabulous at spotting different colours in nature. We collected the items and spread them out on the table. We spoke about the different items we had collected and then followed the instructions to make our own piece of art. We waited patiently until it was our turn with the mallet and we pounded on the fabric until we could see the colours bleed through. Some children realised that certain plants and berries offered more colourful results asking for “more red” and “more berries” and Calvin-John was very specific and he only wanted yellow flowers on his art work. Take a look at this perfect example of hands on learning… Science / Nature / Discovery / Art / Motor Skills
Session 4 – Forest faces
We spoke about our faces and what we used our noses, mouths, eyes and ears for. We played some games in the forest and collected items we thought would make good eyes, objects that would make good mouth shapes etc. We then created our Forest Schools faces using all natural items. Look at the results
Session 5 – Magic Wands
Today we had a message from Magic Meg from the Magic Mountain, she had left us a present in the Foundation Stage garden. Magic sticks … but they weren’t working. So we looked at the message once again and realised they would only work if we decorated them in the woods. She left us instructions of how to make the wands magic. We each carefully chose a wand and found out how to carry them safely over to the woods. We created our special wands and made a magic potion using the spells Magic Meg had left us (but I better not write the words to the spells on here as we need to ensure magic is kept in safe hands). We turned Mrs Burge into a frog and Mrs Hawkes into a mouse. We decided to leave the magic potion in the woods and pour it out onto the tree. Jake thought it might make the tree grow bigger and Millie thought it might turn the tree into a Rabbit – we’ll make sure we keep checking.
Session 6 – Feeding the birds
We know the cold weather is coming and we talked about the birds not being able to get the worms from the ground when the snow and frost comes. We decided to help leave some food/treats for the birds by making special bird feeders. We threaded cheerios onto pipe cleaners, twisted the ends together and hung them on the branches. Today in Forest Schools we had rain too – we loved exploring the forest in the rain and saw that even though it was pouring with rain outside, we were sheltered from the rain because of the big leaves in our forest area.
In Foundation Stage, we were very excited to start ‘Forest Schools’. We are so lucky to have a fantastic ‘forest area’ and log cabin on our premises.
The philosophy of Forest Schools is to encourage and inspire individuals of any age through an innovative, long term, educational approach to outdoor play and learning in a woodland environment. For more information, please visit Forest Schools
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