Forest School in EYFS
At Forest School we can explore our five key working scientifically skills - Observing over time (e.g. looking for signs of seasonal change), Sorting, classifying and grouping (e.g. sorting leaves by size or colour and using identification charts), Pattern seeking (e.g. do bigger worms hide under bigger logs?) and Comparative and fair testing (e.g. which sticks make the strongest bridges?). When we find something we want to know more about, we take a photo and look it up back in class. This is a good way of practising our skills of Researching using secondary sources.
Additionally, the Forest School environment is an excellent way of developing our PSHE, including caring for living things and our environment, and self-regulation and turn taking. We bring in other skills from across the Early Years curriculum and practice subject specific vocabulary, e.g. positional language when making maps.
In Black History Month, we explored the life and work of Nobel Prize-winning environmentalist, Wangarĩ Muta Maathai , who planted trees in Nigeria and founded the Green Belt Movement. We collected tree seeds and planted them to help enrich our environment for future generations.
We link our sessions to our weekly topic e.g. acting out the Three Little Pigs story and testing the different materials, or exploring the importance of camouflage to caterpillars avoiding birds, which linked to our lifecycles topic. We put our team working and engineering skills to the test when we build dens and other structures, including traps for the Big Bad Wolf and Evil Pea!
We are also fortunate to be able to explore our wildlife ponds, and the tadpoles and other wildlife living there, and our Midfield bees.