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Forest School

An introduction to Light Oaks Infant Forest School


Light Oaks Infant Forest School was first established in the Autumn Term 2017.  Due to the promotion of our previously trained Forest School Leader, we restarted in the Autumn Term 2021.


Forest School is a unique educational experience and process that offers children the opportunity to succeed and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland / outdoor environment.


Children engage in motivating and achievable tasks and activities throughout the year and in almost all weathers, with the appropriate footwear and clothing. Children will work with tools, play, learn and begin to understand the boundaries of behaviour, both physical and social. They will grow in confidence, self-esteem and motivation whilst developing an understanding of the natural world.


The Forest School concept originated in Denmark, originally aimed at pre-school children, where it was found that children who attended forest school then arrived at school with strong social and communication skills, having the ability to work in groups effectively, generally had high self-esteem and a confidence in their own abilities. These foundations helped them to raise their academic achievements.


Forest School encourages children to:


  • Develop personal and social skills.
  • Work through practical problems and challenges.
  • Use tools to create, build or manage.
  • Discover how they learn best.
  • Pursue knowledge that interests them.
  • Learn how to manage failures.
  • Build confidence in decision making and evaluating risk.
  • Develop practical skills.
  • Understand the benefits of a balanced and healthy lifestyle.
  • Explore connections between humans, wildlife and the earth.
  • Regularly experience achievement and success.
  • Reflect on learning experiences.
  • Develop their language and communication skills.
  • Improve physical motor skills.
  • Become more motivated.
  • Improve their concentration skills.
  • Improve their communication.
  • Explore the world through all the senses available to them.


What happens at Forest School?


Children take part in a programme of six weekly sessions lasting up to 2 hours. The sessions involve practical hands on activities which aim to build up children’s skills, abilities and confidence week by week.


All sessions are designed and lead by our trained staff, with the help and direction of our Forest School practitioners (Miss Youd and Mrs Jones). However, Forest School strongly encourages participant-led learning so as the weeks progress, learners are given more freedom and responsibility to explore their own interests and therefore initiate and direct their own learning.


Forest School uses natural resources to stimulate imagination, creativity and investigation.  Activities can include:


  • Shelter building
  • Natural Art
  • Using knots and lashings
  • Fire lighting
  • Animal tracking
  • Bug hunts
  • Tree investigations
  • Climbing and balancing
  • Woodwork using tools
  • Creating bug homes and bird feeders
  • Collecting, identifying and sorting natural materials
  • Team games


If you have any further questions about our approach, please contact Miss Youd via the school office.


Forest School Staffing

Georgia Youd             Forest School Leader Level 3

                                   ITC Level 3 Award in Outdoor First Aid

                                   Food Hygiene Level 2

Kerrie Jones             Forest School Leader Level 3   

                                          ITC Level 3 Award in Outdoor First Aid

                                   Food and Hygiene Level 2

                                          Paediatric First Aid