Forest School

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2023-2024 Teaching Staff: Mr C Henden (Contact for more details of Forest School curriculum)

Our Forest School is part of the wider curriculum offer of which Oakwood School is very proud. Currently we have plans to include a large number of Year 7 students to support their transition to “Big School” and we have regular, timetabled sessions with some of the Year 10s and 11s. Leading this programme are specially trained practitioners Mr D Peacefield and Mr C Henden. They are both qualified Outdoor First Aiders.

FsaThe Forest School is less a woodland skills class and more a specialised approach that allows students to re-engage with and control their own learning. The Forest School Association explain it as follows:

“Forest School is an inspirational process that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve, develop confidence and self-esteem, through hands on learning experiences in a local woodland or natural environment with trees.”

There are a great many documented benefits from this kind of alternative approach to learning but as with all outdoor education there are also some minor risks. These will be carefully managed by the school and the Forest School Practitioners. As part of the Forest School Programme, our students will be learning to use tools such as bow saws, mallets, axes and knives safely. All the tools we will use have been specially designed for safe use at Forest Schools and no student will be using a tool they have not been trained to use safely. Similarly, they will be taught how to build, be safe around and extinguish an open campfire.

For one of the sessions we are lucky enough to be able to use a local woodland, where we will plan and build shelters

Please ensure that your child brings appropriate clothing on these dates as they will not be allowed to join the sessions in school uniform. They will change into these clothes during the break time before the session and change back afterwards unless it is the end of the school day.

For each session, your child will need to wear the correct clothing as shown in the list below and bring:

Student Clothing List      Treesprite

Sun/Warm Hat (as appropriate)

Long trousers: Combat trousers/Cargo pants/Jogging bottoms/Thick leggings (no skirts, thin leggings or shorts)

Sun Hat (as appropriate)

Long trousers: Combat trousers/Cargo pants/Jogging bottoms (no skirts, leggings or shorts)

Waterproof Jacket

Ankle Boots/Walking Shoes/Wellies (preferred) OR Trainers (acceptable)

Ankle Boots/Walking Shoes (preferred) OR Trainers (acceptable)

Jumper/Fleece (no hoodies)

Water bottle (no fizzy drinks)


For more information, please download and read our extensive Forest School Handbook.

Contribution: These sessions are fully funded by our Forest Schools sponsor: Fairfax Properties, Haywards Heath.

Forest school

Subject Documents Date  
Oakwood Forest School Handbook 2020 10th Sep 2020 Download
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