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News >2009 >December >Rebuilding of Forest School Site in Solihull

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Forest School Site in Solihull Being Rebuilt 

Date: Friday, December 04, 2009

Warwickshire Wildlife Trust's Forest School Co-ordinator Andy Matthews and Volunteer Manager  Amanda Henshaw, plus the Saturday Volunteer group are set to rebuild the Forest School base camp that was destroyed by vandals over the summer.


A band of volunteers and young people will be rebuilding the base camp area with log seating and a fire circle for local school groups to use for Forest School sessions.  Sessions will provide hands on learning experience for Solihull children, linking the outdoor environment to the National Curriculum.  Activities range from the children making musical instruments or wind chimes using the natural woodland materials to cooking on a campfire.   


The Forest School Project running at Warwickshire Wildlife Trust aims to engage with schools and early years settings to train local staff to become Forest School leaders and run their own Forest Schools. This will be achieved by empowering local staff, with this qualification we are hoping to ensure long-term sustainability for Forest School projects across Solihull, Warwickshire and Coventry.


Forest School is an alternative teaching method based on environmental education and outdoor play.  At Forest School, the children access an outdoor space on a regular basis, over a long time period with a qualified leader to guide the sessions.  Over time, the children become able to direct their own learning experience.  Being given the time and space to explore learning in one's own way has many benefits for children, it allows them to engage again with the learning process, something which not everyone achieves in the classroom.  Initial research into the learning process is proving that learning in the way which suits you best allows much faster access to deeper learning and understanding and it is in this phase where what is learned is retained.  Changes are also seen over time with improved behaviour and self confidence as well as communication and team working skills, too.


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