Phenix City, Alabama
Start Date: January 10, 2019
Forest School Proposal
Objective: To provide Forest School programming for public school students to ignite a love for learning and a love for Go
Why Forest School?
There is a growing body of research and literature that discusses the benefits of children spending time outdoors. A Forest School program would:
· Promote healthy development in a stimulating learning environment.
· Enhance opportunities for free play, such as access to 'loose parts' that inspire creativity.
· Encourage children to take appropriate risks to learn risk assessment and self-regulation.
· Foster social skills and peer-group relations.
· Nurture a connection to God and to the natural world and an understanding of environmental stewardship.
Proposed Program Description:
Forest School programs take participants' holistic development into account, considering well-being, social connection, and environmental awareness just as important as (and arguably necessary for) academic achievement. Benefits associated with Forest School are improved mental and physical health (reducing stress and increasing physical fitness), support of emotional and social development, and the strengthening of participants' relationships to God, their local area, and the greater natural world.
The particular activities that take place at a Forest School are unique to each program's location and the participants' interests. However, there are a few common threads that help define what Forest School is:
· It takes place entirely outside, all year round, in all weather (except for dangerous weather conditions like extreme temperatures or thunderstorms)
· It supports the holistic development and needs of the participants
· It's learner-led and includes time for free exploration and play
· It involves regular and frequent visits, preferably to the same area with the same group of people
· It promotes appropriate levels of risk-taking, like climbing trees, fire lighting, and using tools
Proposed Program Details:
Ages: Preschool through 6th grade.
When: 1-2 afternoon per week (for school age children), 2-day mornings per week (3-4-year old’s)
Timing: Sessions would last approximately 2 hours for afternoon program, and 3-4 hours for preschool
Numbers/ratios: Up to 8 children and 2 adults (Forest School Leader & a volunteer).