Play the Forest School Way

Polly Whyte | Thursday, 20th April 2017
A great little book to encourage adults to inspire children to spend more time playing in nature.
Author: Peter Houghton and Jane Worroll
Publisher: Watkins
Publication year: 2016
RRP: £12.99

If you are a teacher who wants to get your class doing more learning outdoors, or a parent wishing to tempt their children away from Minecraft, this book offers guidance and a selection of tried and tested activities to encourage children aged 3-11 years to fall in love with outdoor play.

The book begins with an intro-ductory guide to how to run a session and encourage children to discover nature and their abilities for themselves.

Four chapters follow of classic Forest School activities, from making mud faces and wooden pendants, to building shelters, fire lighting and woodland games. For each activity, detailed instructions and tables with safety points, kit lists and how the activity will help the children learn and develop are included.

This book looks and feels like it belongs in the woods, with lovely annotations (I particularly like the shield bugs crawling across the pages). There are clearly drawn diagrams to explain particular activities, such as knot tying and fire lighting, designed to be used by children as well as adults. With 140 pages of activity ideas, there is something for every child whatever their age, ability or interest. This is a great little book to encourage adults to inspire children to spend more time playing in nature.

Polly Whyte is the course organiser at The Sustainability Centre.

Useful links

Outdoor Classrooms: A Handbook for School Gardens

Permaculture community projects

Building a children's permaculture movement in PM92

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