All children in Nursery, Pre-Prep and Middle School take part in Forest School.
Forest School began at St Hugh’s in Spring 2012. It has since developed enormously, and has become an integral part of the broader education at the school. Our woodland site covers approximately two acres, and is an ideal setting for the children to explore nature and all the varied excitement offered by the outdoor environment. The opportunities for the children are endless. In any given session they have the chance to practise a number of different activities. These can range from simple insect identification to tree planting, from cooking on an open fire to den-building, from problem-solving to creative work using the natural materials.
The changing seasons and variable weather might normally be seen as a hindrance to the children’s participation, but with our excellent outdoor uniform, we ensure sessions take place in all weathers, except high winds and storms. We have enjoyed tracking prints in the snow, and creating shelters from the rain. The elements mean our Forest School experience is different every time.
Happily we feel we have only scratched the surface of the potential for our site. Our three year development plan involves the coppicing of the hazel trees to generate re-growth, and the planting of our own willow bed, to allow for sustainable weaving. We are also re-introducing native woodland plants and flowers, and planting wild herbs to spice up our outdoor cooking!