Outdoor Learning and Wonderful Woodlands

Our Woodland area is situated next to the school field behind the Foundation area. It has a wealth of natural resources for the children to explore and use to make sense of the world around them. On site is a small pond, fire pit, digging area, mud kitchen, safe tool zone, woodland area; all marked by a natural fence that runs alongside the field. The pond has an additional fence and the children are only able to access this with an adult present. The Woodland Area is available for all year groups to use to enhance the children’s learning.

Our Nursery, Reception and Year 1 children will be using this area on a weekly basis during Wonderful Woodland sessions.

How will my child benefit from outdoor sessions?

  • Our Wonderful Woodland supports the holistic development of the child: Health and fitness – Being active in an outdoor, natural environment.
  • Increased emotional wellbeing
  • Social development -Communicating, and negotiating with peers and adults to solve problems and share experiences.
  • Developing Skills – Developing fine and gross motor skills and coordination for real purposes.
  • Gaining knowledge and understanding – Multi–sensory, real-life learning.
  • Individualised learning – Careful observation allows adults to tailor support to children’s own interests and stage of development.
  • Curriculum Links – Our Wonderful Woodland sessions supports most areas of the Early Years Foundation including Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning.

Possible Wonderful Woodlands activities may include:

  • Hunting for minibeasts and/or pond dipping
  • Natural crafts – making necklaces, crowns or dreamcatchers from willow, collages from natural materials, weaving with long grasses, tree cookies, etc
  • Mud sculptures/art
  • Shelter building and knot tying
  • Tree climbing
  • Using tools for a purpose – such as peeling bark from sticks
  • Making rope swings
  • Fire building and cooking on a camp fire
  • Habitat creation

Sessions are planned around the individual’s and group’s needs, and built upon each week.

Teachers in KS2 will largely use the area in correlation with the curriculum, aiming to take learning outdoors to enrich the children’s learning experiences.