Forest School



Mrs Riddlesdale

Forest School Lead


At Horn Park we strongly believe in the Forest School ethos and children’s right to access the outdoors to learn and explore in a woodland type environment. At present we promote Forest School sessions in all our federation schools. Some sessions are based within the school grounds and some within a woodland setting.


What is Forest School?

Forest School has its roots in Scandinavia and is based on a desire to use the natural outdoor environment to facilitate learning. The fundamental aim of Forest School is to build children’s self-esteem, grow in confidence and independence and creativity, through small achievable tasks. A Forest School session is normally 2 hours long, child led, with established start and finished routines. Sessions are carefully planned based on children’s interests but also includes links from the curriculum. The adults are well briefed and support and encourage children’s learning and their desire to understand the wider natural world in which they live.


Forest School is an inspirational process that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees. (Forest School Learning Alliance)

At Horn Park we offer Forest School to Nursery, Reception, DSP Unit, year 1, year 2 and year 3. Our belief and vision is that all our children attending Horn Park Primary School should at some stage experience Forest School.

We provide Scandinavian Rainwear for children to put on over their uniform to keep them warm. Boots are provided but if parents prefer to supply their own clothing and boots then we would support this option.

Children start the session when they are around base camp. They re-visit forest school rules, to keep them safe and activities are broken down in stages so children understand how to access their learning and fully engage in the forest school sessions. Towards the end of the session children can share their moments in Forest School and finish with hot chocolate to end the session

Forest School Display

The Forest school display is situated in the corridor leading up to key stage 2 classes. Pupil voice is recorded against achievements which are shown and displayed for everyone to see.


Forest School Sites

We have 2 amazing sites for our forest school sessions, both situated within the grounds of the school. Children access these sites on rotation and the children are encouraged to learn about the sustainability of the forest schools and their environment. 



Please Note: Camp fires, cooking and tool use are part of Forest School sessions and are planned experiences for the children ONLY when the Forest School Leader feels the children are ready for these experiences. It is very important that the Leader has the consent and medical letters filled in and returned with any allergies/dietary needs noted. This enables the Forest School Leader to be fully informed when carrying out these experiences.