Forest Schools

Forest Schools originated in Scandanavia in the early 20th century as a as a way of teaching children about the natural world.  Children spend regular, planned time in a natural environment, discovering and learning at their own pace.  They build confidence and social skills as well as developing the ability to assess safety and manage risks.  Activities cover many areas of the curriculum, and above all, it's healthy and enjoyable!



An Introduction to Longford Primary Academy Outdoor Learning & Forest School

Longford Primary Academy Forest School was established in 2022. The Forest School idea grew from the staff’s desire to provide outdoor learning at Longford.

It utilises the woodland area situated within the school grounds and nature garden area which, until the introduction of Forest School, was underused.

The Aim of Forest Schools and Outdoor Learning at Longford Primary Academy, is for children to develop a lifelong love and understanding of the natural environment, whilst embodying the Forest School ethos; namely developing self-esteem, confidence, resilience, independence and emotional literacy.

This aim will be achieved through the following objectives:

At Longford, we usually deliver our Forest School in the woodland situated within the school grounds and the nature garden. This has been sustainably managed and made suitable for Forest School activities by ………. We would like to express thanks to these people for their hard work.  The woodland environment allows children to experience an outdoor setting which is something new or unfamiliar for many of them.

Principles and criteria for good practice

The Forest School ethos has six principles, which were agreed by the UK Forest School community in 2011.

Principle 1:

Forest School is a long-term process of frequent and regular sessions in a woodland or natural environment, rather than a one-off visit. Planning, adaptation, observations and reviewing are integral elements of Forest School.

Principle 2:

Forest School takes place in a woodland or natural wooded environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.

Principle 3:

Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.

Principle 4:

Forest School offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.

Principle 5:

Forest School is run by qualified Forest School practitioners who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice.

Principle 6:

Forest School uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for development and learning

Forest School / Outdoor Learning staff.

Level 3 Leader – Melanie Byron

Forest School Assistant – Kylie Ellison


The Longford Code

Driven by curiosity, we develop our understanding through collaboration, skilfully exploring and reflecting upon new concepts.
We readily take on challenges with resilience, as we become resourceful, creative life-long learners.
We are well-informed and make positive contributions to our communities.
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