Forest School

Forest School at Rainbow Pre School
Each term we take a small group of children to enjoy Forest School, this group remains the same for the whole term so new friendships are formed and they help remind each other of what they have done previously, building on their experiences.
We have a fully qualified Forest School staff level 3 and level 2 qualified who take the children each week.
We complete thorough Risk Assessments and before each session our Forest School staff visits the Forest School site to inspect it and put up our signs to say that Forest School will be taking place.

Before leaving Rainbow, the children are encouraged to use the toilet and get dressed appropriately for the season and weather. We provide waterproof trousers and will always make sure children are prepared. We have a special wagon which carries all of the items we might need such as tarpaulins, ropes, pegs and clips, ground mats and picnic rugs, explorer rucksacks, reference books and photos. We always take a First Aid Kit specifically prepared for Forest School (all staff members hold paediatric first aid certificates), emergency contact numbers and the Rainbow mobile phone. As well as items for hand washing and sanitising. A healthy snack is also prepared and fresh drinking water is taken.

The children are taught about how to keep safe and the reasons why, we let them think about the risks and encourage them to take responsibility for their actions- so which things they can touch, where they might walk, how to hold an insect. As we have a high staff to child ratio, they are always within close contact with an adult who is there to support, guide and encourage them

The children love exploring the Forest School area, the different trees, grasses and plants. Discovering wildlife and how insects and the animals they find live. Getting messy, being out in the fresh air and experiencing the weather without being uncomfortable. It is a wonderful time for them to interact in a sensory and meaningful way. The adults are trained to facilitate their learning and we find it builds their language, confidence and attention skills.
When the children return to Rainbow, they get changed, wash their hands and usually have a rest! The Forest School Leader then writes up a summary of what has happened that session onto those children’s Tapestry accounts and it is added to their journals.
Forest School has many advantages and there has been lots of research about the effectiveness and positivity it provides. The children absolutely thrive and enjoy themselves; we are proud to offer Forest School to our children!