In recent years forest schools have helped children with their learning. They are great platforms for younger minds. If your setting doesn’t yet have a forest school, here are five reasons you should consider creating one now.
- It Helps To Build Confidence And Independence
Whether it is building dens, navigating, creating mud pies, activities in a forest school help to build confidence and independence in children. They feel empowered as they learn about interacting with their natural environment and this makes them more likely to participate in activities that seem daunting or scary.
- It Teaches Empathy
Working in groups outside helps children to bond as a group. This allows them to become more aware of the emotional needs of others and of the environment they’re in. This can help them learn important social skills that will benefit them as they progress through their education and future life.
- It Helps With Physical Fitness
Physical fitness is high up in government priorities right now. Forest school can help with this in a natural and fun way. Children can be persuaded to use obstacle courses, play traditional school games like hide-and-seek and generally have fun while out and about.
- Improved Physical And Mental Health
The health benefits of playing outside are numerous. Studies have shown outside sunlight and soil microorganisms help to increase serotonin levels. This chemical is linked to feeling good and sunlight provides vitamin D, which is essential for healthy bone and muscle growth. In addition, outside play helps with reducing stress and anxiety.
- Improved Learning
Research has shown that children are best learning through their experiences. Therefore, getting them outside to try new activities is the best way for them to learn new skills. Simple tool handling, health and safety and even mathematics can be incorporated into forest school sessions.
- Better Sleep
Everyone sleeps better if they have had some time outside. Therefore, forest school can help children get more restful nights.
Do you use forest school in your setting? What benefits have you seen?
Let us know in the comments below.
Able Canopies Ltd. design, manufacture and install canopies and shade structures at schools, nurseries and commercial organisations across the UK.
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