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Ravenshead C of E Primary School

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Outdoor Learning in our School Wood

We are incredibly fortunate to have our own extensive school wood. (approximately 2 acres).  Every child in the school has regular outdoor learning sessions, (an afternoon per fortnight Y2-6 and an afternoon each week in FSU and Y1) providing them with learning opportunities through practical activities.  Children enjoy the freedom to explore and experience the natural world, in all seasons and in all weathers.  Our outdoor learning  embraces an approach of nurturing, supporting and developing the self-esteem of all children.  It is an ideal environment in which to develop innovation, problem solving, risk-taking, creativity and teamwork. 


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Ravenshead C of E Forest Essentials Kit List 

In order to be able to use our forest all year round, children need to have the appropriate kit – ‘there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing!’ 


To keep children safe, comfortable and prepared, please ensure that they come to school in / with the correct kit on their woods day. If they do not come with the correct clothing and footwear, they will not be able to take part in the session and will remain inside. 


To avoid bites and other injuries, children need to have their legs and arms covered during woods sessions. They should also not be wearing any clothing with any lose parts or dangling bits. This is essential. 


Please be mindful that clothes will get dirty as we do not intend to stay clean!  Children will need a clean pair of shoes to change into when they go back into their classroom.


What to wear to school 

School PE Kit (not clothes of choice): 

  • Comfortable trousers  - joggers or leggings, no shorts.

  • Long sleeved t-shirt - white, black or navy blue. If your child only has short sleeved t-shirts, that is fine, but they will need to keep their jumper on. 

  • Jumper - not a hoodie that has dangling cords.

  • Trainers - for wearing in school. 


What to bring to school 

  • Waterproof coat with a hood.
  • Change of footwear - sturdy, closed shoes e.g. wellies or walking boots, not sandals or any shoes without a back or that don’t cover toes. 
  • Hat - appropriate for the weather. 


Added extras (if you have them) 

  • Waterproof trousers. 
  • Fleece. 
  • Spare, thick socks – to wear over the top of their normal socks, particularly useful in winter. 
  • Additional optional clothing for winter – extra layer, gloves, neck snood (not scarf).

What will Outdoor Learning Sessions be Like?

  • Earlier sessions focus on core skills and safety - establishing boundaries and routines.
  • Children will learn how to cook on an open fire, use tools, make dens, leave trails, go on scavenger huts, make environmental art, mud sculptures and lots more.   
  • At the beginning of sessions, children sit together in the log circle or canopy and discuss what they are going to do.  The class teacher reminds the children of the boundaries and does any safety talks before the children start their activities.
  • On some occasions, children will have a snack (an opportunity to refuel and reflect on how the activities are going).
  • Some of the activities will be teacher led (e.g. using tools) and some will be child-led e.g. den building.


Health and Safety

  • All staff are trained in emergency first aid and will have a special kit with them.
  • The site and activities are risk assessed carefully and the children will be given detailed training.
  • Children will be supervised by an adult when working with tools and will work in small groups.
  • By allowing children to take risks, we help prepare them for making choices and teach them to be actively responsible for themselves, their choices and their actions.
  • It is essential your child’s medical and emergency contact information in school is up to date.


Please be mindful that clothes will get dirty as we do not intend to stay clean!  Children will need a clean pair of shoes to change into when they go back into their classroom.