Forest School

We are very lucky at Philpots to have a friendly and approachable fully qualified Forest School teacher who can work with our young people in 19 acres of species rich woodland onsite. The woods at school have been left in a natural state for many years and contain caves, streams and gorges. Deer, badgers and foxes frequent the woods and a large variety of wildlife and plants are available to study which creates a natural outdoor classroom allowing freedom and responsibility for young people.

Students will be able to learn basic tool use, fire lighting and campfire cooking skills, developing their own outdoor projects as they are given the time and space to appreciate the natural world supported by a positive, knowledgeable and enthusiastic teacher. Our older students can develop this knowledge by studying for a BTEC Sport and Active Leisure once they reach 14 years old, which allows them to develop a Forest School based outdoor project over the course of a year.

Forest school is a unique way of building independence, self-esteem, self-regulation and a positive attitude to learning in children and young people as they are allowed to explore and experience the natural world for themselves. Valuable life skills are learnt, young people develop their team working skills, communication and sense of responsibility.

Please see our curriculum overview below:

Curriculum Overview

Year Topics
Year 7 As part of their enrichment curriculum all Year 7 pupils follow a 6-week Forest School course, the aim being to develop team-building skills.
10 & 11 Forest School is one of the option courses in Years 10 and 11.

John Muir Award
This is awarded at three levels:

  • Discovery – Identifying aspects and features of a wild place.
  • Explorer – Increasing awareness and understanding of wild places.
  • Conserver – Taking responsibility and caring for/maintaining wild places. The emphasis is on hands-on, experiential learning in the natural environment.

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