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Outdoor Learning

Robin Hood Primary aims to provide Outdoor Learning experiences for all children.

We have developed a whole-school, progressive outdoor learning curriculum giving all the children in our school an opportunity to explore, consolidate and develop their knowledge and understanding of the ever-changing natural environment. The activities are created to inspire their curiosity, stimulate their senses and through challenging, yet achievable tasks using various real tools and natural resources, bring learning to life. This helps to create an understanding of the balance of nature and the finite resources around us.

Philosophy

The Forest School approach originated in Denmark where children are encouraged to learn through play in an outdoor environment. Sessions aim to encourage and inspire children to develop their personal, social and emotional skills through participation in tasks and activities that are both challenging and achievable. These can be set up as child led activities, group work or 1:1 tasks.
Forest School is an appropriate method to integrate into a state school system as the learning outcomes are closely linked to Prime and Specific areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage and the National Curriculum. This makes the planning and assessment of the activities compatible with our methods at Robin Hood Primary School.

The Outdoor Classroom

Forest school sessions are fun and engaging, responding to the needs and interests of the group, they are lead by qualified and skilled practitioners. At Robin Hood Primary we are able to offer our children access to a range of outdoor classrooms; the woodland setting, our purpose built Outdoor Learning Area and our Sensory Garden. This enables the school to deliver sessions that are specifically designed to meet the needs of each year group, planning learning outcomes linked to the curriculum. Children are able to develop their understanding and appreciation of the natural environment and a love of the outdoors through first-hand learning opportunities.

Developing resourceful, creative learners.

At Robin Hood Primary we believe that the awe and wonder of the natural world should be an integral part of our curriculum. We recognise that outdoor learning is the key to inspiring, motivating and enabling cross-curricular and deep level learning opportunities.

We know that in our ever changing world, it is as important for children to know how to learn, to become resourceful, creative, resilient learners, working collaboratively and seeing challenges as learning opportunities. Forest school actively promotes these learning aims; helping children to develop their self-esteem, confidence and resilience. Developing their emotional intelligence, empathy and communication enables them to manage their emotions effectively.
We believe that all the children attending our school can benefit from the Forest School approach to learning and that it is the responsibility of the Outdoor Learning Coordinator and class teachers to work in collaboration, to maximise the learning potential and ensure that there is accessibility for all.

A Forest School approach enables children to:

  • Develop language and communication skills
  • Explore negotiation, team building and conflict resolution skills in a safe
  • Learn how to manage difficulties and problem solve.
  • Build confidence in decision-making and how to manage risk.
  • Learn how to use real tools safely and with purpose.
  • Achieve success
  • Time to reflect on experiences.
  • Improve physical motor skill and increase opportunity for physical exercise.
  • Increase motivation and concentration skills.

We believe that all these skills are transferable to the classroom and have a positive impact on children’s capacity and motivation to learn.