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Forest Schools and the Early Years Foundation Stage

Looking after children of pre-school age requires careful observation and adherence to the Early Years Foundation stage principles and the seven areas of learning.  Forest skills sessions can certainly provide for the unique child and help that child to build positive relationships.  It is clearly an enabling environment and we know that for preschool children there is definitely the opportunity to meet early learning goals.
We have already mentioned about how forest skills sessions provide opportunity for physical development as well as enabling children to use their imagination and explore different natural materials and tools. Children are able to develop their communication and language skills too by gaining knowledge of new things, widening their vocabulary, listening and responding to instructions and socialising with staff and peers.  Pre-writing skills develop through using sticks to mark make, using natural paints and tools in order to develop gross motor skills whilst producing large art works on the forest floor. 

In addition to helping children develop their self confidence, forest skills session also enhance their personal social and emotional development by allowing them to learn to take small risks whilst also getting to know how to remain safe at all times. 

Their understanding of the world will be expanded naturally through real life experience in situ rather than just through table top explorations and books, although these can act later as further extension. 

Mathematical skills are introduced in the forest skills activities the children pursue from learning how to manipulate tools, to finding their way around, looking at nature’s solutions to problems and studying colour, shapes, size, distance, the list is virtually endless! 

For more information about Forest Skills Sessions at Hambrook Hedgehogs, please contact Zoë.

© Copyright Zoë Hendy 2011.