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Forest School

Welcome from our Forest School Leads

Ms Ema Rowe and Mrs Tamara Chisling


Forest school goes back to the 1800's in Europe; it has its roots in the Scandinavian way of living 'Friliftsliv' - free air life. It was first introduced in the UK by a group of nursery nurses from Bridgwater college in Somerset. They travelled to Denmark to look at the pre-school system in place there, which is largely outdoor, child centred and play based. The group were inspired by what they had seen and installed the ideas and learning into their own college pre-school. This has now expanded across the country and Forest schools can be found in all counties and in many schools.


Forest School gives children a chance to explore the world through a forest school environment; it is a long term, child-led learning process offering opportunities for holistic growth through regular sessions. By following guidelines and clear risk assessments, the Forest School staff give the children the space to develop their language, social skills and motor skills.

These session offer the children a safe, non judgemental environment where they can take risks confidently and build their self belief, confidence and resilience. It also enables the children to build a connection to the world around them and understand their place within it.


Forest School offers children regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a natural environment. Children are encouraged to:

  • Explore and discover at their own pace
  • Experience appropriate risk and challenge
  • Initiate and drive their own learning
  • Experience regular success
  • Develop positive relationships with themselves, others and their natural environment
  • Learn practical skills using a range of tools, in a safe environment
  • Develop a positive mental attitude, self-motivation and independence

Children enjoy activities ranging from sawing and drilling, lighting fires, making hot chocolate, cooking popcorn, shelter building, designing and making bug hotels, building dens and swings.   These magical opportunities are supported by a fully qualified and skilled Forest School leader.

What Happens at Forest School?

The sessions are filled with different activities that explore the Forest School environment. These sessions are frequently linked directly to the Curriculum, expanding the knowledge already learned in the classroom. The engaging, practical activities encourage the children to work and play respectfully both of each other and of their surroundings, whilst also learning about the natural local environment.

Will my child be safe, playing and working outside?

Absolutely! We do everything to ensure that your child as a fun, safe environment by taking preside checks, risk assessments, ensuring correct ratios and clear instructions, to name a few. All for a fact filled, fun Forest School experience.



What About The Weather?


Children don't worry about a bit of rain and nor do we. Besides, here in Minehead we're used to more than just a little bit of rain - it's a way of life! But nor do we want to put anyone - child or adult - at risk, so with our preside check, we do a weather check for high winds or anything that might make the session unsafe. We also assess regularly as the weather changes during each session.

Forest School Clothing


- Waterproof coat

- Waterproof trousers

- Long sleeved top

- Full length trousers

- Wellingtons or walking boots in Winter

- Warm Socks

- Gloves and warm hat for Winter

- Sun hat for summer


Please note: for your child's safety, if they are not wearing the appropriate clothing, then they will not be able to participate in the Forest School session. Why not leave a separate "Forest School" bag in school?