Forest Schools – all the rage in Europe – are taking the UK by storm. Now a new summer holiday club based on the Forest School concept will be providing fascinating days out for young children during July and August.
Teacher and soon-to-be-qualified Forest School leader, Emma Purcell, has worked with youngsters in and out of the classroom from setting up a pioneering school garden at Broad Oak Primary School back in 2004 to leading campfire parties at Wilderness Wood.
Recently she helped to run popular after-school clubs for The Great Out-Tours in Mayfield, High Hurstwood and Punnetts Town.
Emma has been working towards qualification as a Forest School leader since 2008, recently volunteering with Burwash Primary School and Chosen Paths, Herstmonceux, to gain further experience.
She has now found a woodland site and is thrilled to be able to lead her own Forest School at Darwell Woods, a Forestry Commission site between Brightling, Roberstbridge and Mountfield.
Initially this will be run as a summer holiday club on Tuesdays and Thursdays in July and August but Emma eventually hopes to link with local schools for classes to visit the site regularly in term time.
The Club is for ages five-11 starting Thursday, July 24. Emma said: “Forest School is an educational movement gaining popularity in the UK after decades of successful integration in Scandinavia.
“It provides a perfect antidote to modern syndromes of child obesity, digital overload and ‘nature deficit disorder’. Children have the opportunity to play, explore and create in a natural environment.
“They are encouraged to take managed risks in a safe outdoor setting. Activities include firelighting, shelter building, nature exploration and craft.”
Family days and craft workshops for adults are also in the pipeline, so keep checking for updates on her website: http://ironwoodforestschool.com/