The Forest Classroom-Nature to Nurture…allowing nature to nurture our well-being.
Deep in a Liverpool woods, all seated around a campfire, todays mums, dads and toddlers enjoy a classroom like no other. For this is Liverpool’s first Forest School. A nursery in the heart of a wood with none of your expensive commercial furniture, computer assisted technology or expensive gadgetry to aid the learning process; for the learning process is all around in the forest sounds, smells, and activities, where creepy crawlies abound and the world of awe and wonder interest both parent and child in a learning partnership.
The Forest school is an inspiration process that offers children, young people and adults, regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through the hands on learning experiences in a woodland environment.
Seated on a log around a smouldering campfire with mugs of tea in our hands, Julie White the brains behind this venture tells me that the forest setting is adaptable and allows for a flexible approach to learning that can accommodate a range of learning styles, such as kinaesthetic learning (doing) linguistic, interpersonal, mathematical and visual learning.
The Forest School approach allows practitioners to shape teaching methods to individual children’s learning styles and is suitable for all with children and young people with a range of special needs.
While I was there I was amazed at the children’s enthusiasm, motor skill development, self-confidence, concentration, imagination and problem solving skills. All amenities were made of wood, with logs of all sizes, string and branch acting as a swing,
The children were never still, exploring within the of realms of a boundary taped area where there was a buzz of activity, child friendly-yes, fun-You bet!
This was the type of fun learning I had on my dads allotment when I was five. It was there, that planting skills, growing and nurturing seeds and seedlings provided an interest in all living things giving me an experiencial learning with a valued sense of knowledge and understanding of the environment.
This outdoor learning nursery supports the emotional well-being of children and shows the importance of nature for tomorrow’s child.
Julie has just been awarded the New Environmental Enterprise Award 2014.
Places for the above are well sought after with parents both local and far afield applying for places. A super classroom setting!