Netherbrook Primary School

Forest School

Forest school is an opportunity for your child to experience nature and the outdoor environment in a safe, secure and hands on way.

In Forest School, children learn to take risks and learn to succeed with small, achievable tasks. They learn to manage their own risk levels to achieve personal safety. Children learn best from first hand experiences. Exploring, playing and so learning using a range of activities (both designed by the leader and instigated by the children themselves) is what Forest School is all about. The children are encouraged to investigate and explore but also to respect all living things.

From an early age, the children learn to use and care for a range of tools, such as bill hooks, knives, bow saws and loppers as well as rope techniques, outdoor first aid and basic personal care in the outdoors. The tasks the children undertake promote the development of self-confidence, patience and determination to succeed. These tasks will include:

  • Using senses to explore and investigate the site.
  • Crafts using natural materials gathered from the site.
  • Using tools such as knives, saws and secateurs to make name tags, decorations, etc.
  • Learning knots and lashings to help with construction activities or pulling/moving heavy objects.
  • Exploring the natural environment.
  • Climbing trees and making play equipment from logs and ropes.
  • Learning to assess and take acceptable risks in the natural environment.
  • Storytelling, drama, making natural music and singing.
  • Cooking on an open fire.
  • Getting muddy!

Each year, every child in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 will attend a series of six Forest School sessions in our outdoor classroom, learning about the natural environment and acquiring skills. The Forest School sessions are not an 'addition' but are part of the children's learning experiences, part of their school year.

They will participate in a range of planned activities and will also have ‘free time’ in which they can pursue their own interests or revisit previous activities. These sessions will take place at different times each year to allow children to experience the full range of seasons and weather types.

  • Year 1 - Autumn Term
  • Year 2 - Summer Term
  • Year 3 - Spring Term
  • Year 4 - Summer Term
  • Year 5 - Autumn Term
  • Year 6 - Spring Term

EYFS children will take part in sessions throughout the year.

Dressing for Forest School

It is important that all children have appropriate clothing suitable for all weather conditions. As the activities will be taking place outside, children should wear old, comfortable clothing which they can get muddy.

In the winter months, children will need to come prepared for each session with:

  • Woolly hat and scarf
  • Gloves
  • Old warm jacket/waterproof coat
  • Waterproof trousers (if possible)
  • Fleece/sweatshirt
  • Long, comfortable, warm trousers
  • Spare socks/jumper
  • Sturdy shoes/trainers
  • Wellies

In the summer months, children will need to come prepared for each session with:

  • A waterproof coat
  • Sun hat/cap
  • A thin, long sleeved top
  • Long, comfortable trousers
  • Sturdy shoes/trainers
  • Water bottle


See the children enjoying different experiences at Forest School: