What is Forest School?

Set entirely outside among the woodland, a Forest School gives your child hands-on positive outdoor experiences. Here they’ll experience the changing seasons and grow to love nature, using adventure equipment that’s been thoughtfully designed to match every stage of their development.

Our two Forest Schools don’t only give your child the opportunity to grow their own plants and vegetables, climb trees or play in the fresh air – though we love that they do! They teach problem-solving and co-operation, through engaging, motivating, challenging and achievable tasks. Working together, our activities will help to develop your child’s empathy, self-esteem and self-awareness.

Help your child develop their social skills, independence & creativity
Help your child develop their social skills, independence & creativity

What happens at our Forest Schools?

Imagination runs free outside among the trees! Your child might make dragon soup in the mud kitchen, or meet new friends at the fairy doors. They’ll engage directly with nature: listening to the birds, going on a bug hunt, or feeling the grass beneath their feet on a barefoot walk. Building dens is always fun – and so is gathering around the fire pit, where your child will learn how to be safe while enjoying hot chocolate and even cooking their own food.

You’ll find Forest Schools at The Elms and The Oaks, which are lucky enough to have lots of outdoor spaces, and we definitely make the most of them. Eight of our staff are qualified as Level 3 Forest School Leaders, and we’re training more all the time.

Outdoor learning at The Maples

The Maples provides free-flow access into a creative garden area, as well as indoor planting and a living ceiling.

Better still, the Maples’ location in the grounds of Winterbourne House allows children to enjoy an incredible seven acres of botanic garden. With the help of Winterbourne gardeners, children tend their own allotment, growing vegetables, conserving water, and discovering how the seasons affect the world around them.