Nottinghamshire Children’s Centres first in UK to get Forest School recognition

Nottinghamshire Children and Families Partnership (NCFP) has become the first group of Children’s Centres in the UK to become Forest School accredited.

Forest School is a type of outdoor education, originally developed in Scandinavia, which encourages children to develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning outdoors. Activities such as building shelters, using tools and lighting fires help children learn about the natural environment, how to handle risk, and how to use their initiative to solve problems and cooperate with others.

ncfpStaff from 60 Children’s Centres across Nottinghamshire received Level 1 Forest School training from Bridgewater College in May. 26 workers also completed Level 3 training. Staff learnt how to plan activities to encourage learning and development and were taught basic outdoor skills, such as using tools, constructing fires and shelters, and tying knots and lashings.

NCFP manages the Children’s Centres across the County on behalf of Nottinghamshire County Council. The partnership is made up of Nottinghamshire Healthcare, North Nottinghamshire College and Family Action.

Libby Mackenzie, Children’s Centre Coordinator for NCFP, organised the training. She has been a Forest School Leader for over ten years.

Libby comments –

“This training is the start of something special for NCFP; and next year we will see it grow as the knowledge and learning is cascaded out to families and children across Nottinghamshire.

“I know first-hand how much a child can grow and develop if given the freedom to achieve. All children are born with wings; it is an adult’s role to teach them to fly.”

For more information, contact your local Children’s Centre Coordinator.