Oakhurst Community First and nursery school
Forest school ethos statement
At Oakhurst, we believe strongly that our children are little acorns, ready to grow into mighty Oaks.
Forest schools believe in frequent and regular sessions in a woodland setting, with a combination of direct teaching and child-led activities that aim to develop young people’s capacity and motivation to learn enabling them to reach their full potential.
It aims to promote holistic development by encouraging resilience, creativity, independence, and the ability to problem solve by improving young people’s understanding, and skills, inspiring curiosity, values, and personal and social development.
Taking them outside and helping them connect with the natural environment is more important now than ever before. Teaching them to respect their environment is vital to their future. Research shows that nature play not only nurtures children’s creativity and inquisitiveness but promotes good health, raises vitamin levels, inspires problem-solving and builds confidence. Regular outside learning helps develop focus and concentration. It will develop their gross motor skills, build muscle strength and help with coordination. Learners are given the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to themselves and the environment. Too often, children in modern society either run headlong into risks without assessing them first or fail to extend their experiences for fear of taking risks. Outdoor learning can teach them to manage and access risks before taking them.
It promotes good sleep and a healthy appetite and generally makes us feel happier. Colds and other viruses don’t spread as easily outside and medical research proves it helps boost the immune system.
Our sessions build vocabulary and long-term memory. By participating in a range of experiences in a woodland environment, with the opportunity to reflect, their emotional literacy, communication and social skills are developed.