This term our topic is ‘Turrets and Tiaras’. We learned about castles in the morning and played with knights and horses. So with handmade willow horses, we mounted our steeds and set off for a gallop to the woods.

This week we learned that all the storms that have been recently made lots of mud and puddles, so we had to choose a different route to the woods (and passed Benny the school dog returning from his lunchtime walk).

The Impact of Forest School for the children is the knowledge the children have gained from the Forest School experience.

The impact of the children’s learning about safety was great to see as they walked carefully and sensibly along the pavement down to the access to the old railway line.

Lots of the children spoke about how they used to go to the playschool there before coming to school and explained to others that the Playschool building is in the old Hartfield station. They demonstrated the impact of how much they had developed their understanding of changes over time and their personal connections to the village.

The impact of Forest School can be seen through the skills, tools used, art and craft activities, observations and knowledge of the fruit, plants trees in relation to the seasons and the skills involved in learning how to play Forest School games.

The children showed the impact of learning about how to stay healthy by stopping at nearly every puddle, so their horses could have a drink.

In one of the ditches along the track we spotted some frogs spawn and talked about how it will develop. The children also noticed catkins on the hazel trees and showed the development of their plant recognition skills by pointing more of them out and gleefully collecting fallen catkins, which they thought looked like caterpillars. We looked out for other signs of spring and spotted some primroses and daffodils.

The children learned a song and actions about spring.

”Spring is here”, said the bumblebee,

“How do you know?” said the old oak tree,

“Because I saw a daffodil,

Dancing with the fairies on the windy hill”.

At the railway bridge we sat down to have a drink ourselves and we listened to a story. Logan had written a story of ‘The three Billy Goat’s Gruff’ in Cherry class and he narrated the story whilst others acted it out for the class. The bridge was great for the ‘trip-trap’ sounds in the story.

The children found a new bench along the route and talked about who had put it there. They used their reading skills to sound out and blend the letters which were written on the bench. They all agreed that it is really important to take their rubbish home with them.

Once in the woods the children had time for a snack and some more exploring. The impact of the children’s progress in physical challenge. Being independent on the slack line, by just using the rope and ladder to climb. They also explored the fallen oak tree and made up imaginary castle stories about being ‘…the King of the castle…’

The children talked about what they had noticed, learned and enjoyed this week before finding a less muddy route out of the woods and the hill! Thanks to our volunteers for supporting the children and allowing them to directly show the impact of their learning and connection to their local environment at Forest School.