ABOUT FOREST SCHOOL
The Forest School ethos is to let the children lead whenever possible. There is a huge diversity of games, activities and resources within a woodland site, and it is through this richness that the participants develop their sense of independence, explore their own interests, and try new things as well as take risks. The activities are to guide them through this long-term process and to enable them to have fun too. Any games or activities will be appropriate for the site, the age and ability of the group.
Activities CAN include:
- Exploring a natural environment
- Using Tools
- Natural craft creations
- Art and jewellery using woodland resources
- Games and Imaginative play
- Building dens and other structures
- Learning about flora and fauna
- Team/group activities
- Sensory activities
- Adventure, scavenger hunts
- Fire lighting and cooking
- Rope and string work
- Tracking animals or birds
- Role play and story telling
- Seasonal celebrations
FOREST SCHOOL AIMS TO:
- To develop opportunities for participants to enjoy being in the outdoors and in all weather.
- To raise their awareness of the beauty and resources available to them in the woods.
- To enable them to take risks; how to reflect on their achievements and activities; and provide free playtime.
- To help particpants discover their own learning styles and grow in confidence and resilience as a result.
- To provide children with practical life skills, and decision making skills, and therefore become more independeNT and motivated.
- To help individuals work as a team and to develop their social skills which will help in relationship building.
- To give them a more balanced, positive, confident outlook on life and be able to deal with many different situations.
- To encourage others to embrace the Forest School ethos
- To foster resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.
- To improve ‘Eco-literacy’ and ‘Physical literacy’
Wildtime Leader Johanna Brown has a keen interest in outdoor learning and nature connection for people of all ages. In 2014 she trained as a Forest school leader in London. Since then she has worked in schools and early years centres in the UK. She was involved in Coillte’s Compass Club initiative 2015 - 2016, running after school programmes and leading school tours. She has also facilitated her own holiday camps, college student training days, private nature connection sessions, and camps for children with additional needs.
She is also trained in:
Strengths Based Learning
(nurture what the child is good at, boosting confidence, rather than trying to fix a weakness)
Leave No Trace: (teaches respect for the environment)
Wilderness First Aid, level 2
Johanna works closely with Dan Kealy who started his company Epic Adventures because he wanted to share his passion and enthusiasm for the outdoors with others. After completing a HND in Outdoor Adventure Management and an Hons degree in Outdoor Education, Dan then set off on his own adventure. On a trip that was supposed to last one year, Dan arrived home five years later, after living and working in many amazing places, such as Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Spain, France and New Caledonia. He is passionate about experiencing the wonders of nature and the natural world.
‘My 8yr old is thoroughly enjoying learning about nature, how to put up a tent and how to light a camp fire in a fun and friendly environment. He is having a “wildtime” in the fresh air. I asked him to describe his time with Johanna and Dan in one word and his reply was “Fantastic”. Keep up the good work.’
Karen Brennan - Mum of Oran