Introduction to the Principles and Ethos of Forest Schools

9:15am — 4:15pm

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Course Description

This exciting and fun course will suit a wide range of learners, including those in teaching or outdoor education, parents, college students, or any adults who wish to gain a basic understanding of the Forest School concept. Participants will develop their knowledge in outdoor learning and development skills and ideas to enjoy themselves or to share with others. The course is aimed at anyone enthusiastic about being in the outdoors and working with natural materials, providing an excellent starting point for further learning or employment in the Forest School sector.


Students will develop an understanding of the principles and key criteria of a Forest School programme, as well as develop the practical skills and knowledge to undertake a range of Forest School activities in a woodland environment.


Students are asked to read the following information prior to the commencement of the first session and arrive promptly and appropriately equipped for the first session.

Course Structure

Duration: 3 Lecture days 28 June, 5 & 12 July

Location: One Garden, Stanmer Park, Plumpton College

Times: Day 1 - arrive at 10.00 for registration.

All further days will run between 9.15am – 4.15 pm


Course Details and Requirements


On your first session please meet in the Atrium of the One Garden Café, from here students will be given details of all the teaching locations for the course including practical sessions under taken in the woodlands.  Please arrive promptly and those arriving by car please pay for the first hour of parking in the carpark and come to the Atrium of the café where your tutor will give you a parking pass for the remainder of the course.

All sessions, apart from the first session at 10.00 am, will start promptly at 9.15 am and finish at 4.15 pm each day.  There will be breaks throughout the day including lunch.

Lunch can be purchased at the One Garden Café or a packed lunch can be brought. During many of the practical sessions there will be campfire cooking, please advise the instructor at the beginning of the course if you have any food allergies/issues/restrictions. 

For each session please wear long trousers and long-sleeved shirts and good quality waterproof outer layers and footwear.  During the colder months of the year please bring additional warm layers of clothing including gloves and thick/thermal socks; during the warmer months please come equipped with appropriate hats/sun cream/insect repellents. Please do not attend in crocs, Ugg boots or sandals.


Please bring the following equipment to the first and all following sessions

For Practical outdoor sessions





*please do not bring any personal tools, equipment or knives to sessions, all equipment needed for activities will be made available


Physical Activities
We ask that any student notify the instructor prior to the commencement of the course if there are any issues they feel may affect their participation in outdoor physical activities. Due to the nature of the setting and the activities undertaken during this event please be aware minor scrapes, scratches and bruises are not uncommon.


Course Requirements

In order to achieve the award students must complete/present the following:


All participants are required to attend all training days as indicated above


Learning Outcomes

·Understanding the Forest School ethos and approach to learning

·Recognise the benefits of connecting to Nature and participating in Forest School for learners

·Learn to safely use a range of introductory hand tools for a range of bush craft activities including whittling

·Be able to participate in a range of nature-based Forest School Activities

·Learn a range of knots and rope skills suitable for making swings, ladders and camp equipment

·Understand the methods used in identification of a range of woodland species

·Understand the impact of Forest School on the woodland environment

·Understand hazards and managing risks in a Forest School setting.

These learning outcomes will be achieved through a range of practical tasks as well as short written or verbal tasks.


Course details

Dates & Location

Friday 28th June 2024 - Friday 12th July 2024


2 Weeks



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