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Forest School and Orienteering

At Perry Hall Primary School we run half term blocks of Forest School for Reception and years 1, 2 and 3. In addition to this, we have an after-school club called the 'Forest Rangers' where children are in charge of caring for the Forest School site.

Forest School encourages the children to explore using their own ideas and imagination. Most activities are child led, to allow the children to investigate and problem solve in areas that they are interested in. This will help develop independent, self-motivated thinkers. Activities are put together in small manageable steps that we scaffold to allow the children to develop the skill they are learning, at their own pace and level.  By helping the child to succeed in their task, it boosts their self-esteem and confidence. Research shows that being outdoors improves mental health, communication skills and social relationships.

The Benefits of Forest School include:

  •  Developing a respect for our natural environment
  •  Encouraging resilience
  •  Improving physical development
  •  Enabling children to be self-motivated
  •  Encouraging independence and risk taking
  •  Supporting the development of self-esteem and self confidence
  •  Experiencing a sense of freedom

The children carry out various activities in groups, pairs and on their own. They can play hide and seek, build dens, make mud sculpture/faces, go bug hunting, investigate weather, collect and sort various natural materials and much more. Children need time to explore their feelings, thoughts and relationships and at Forest School they have time to do this, whilst developing an understanding of the world around them and its environment.


At Perry Hall, we are also lucky enough to have a permanent Orienteering course on site. The course consists of a map of Perry Hall with a series of ‘controls’ marked on it. These correspond to control markers situated around the Perry Hall site.

Orienteering is a challenging outdoor adventure sport that exercises both the mind and the body. The aim is to navigate in sequence between control points marked on a unique orienteering map and decide the best route to complete the course in the quickest time. Orienteering is used cross curricular to support subjects such as Maths, PE and Geography.

The Benefits of Orienteering include:

  • Make learning active across the curriculum, putting health and wellbeing at the core of learning
  • Meet the chief medical officer’s call to deliver 30 active minutes per day tackling the inactivity problem and reducing sitting time
  • Take a scientific approach to improving standards across school – daily exercise and activity improves the brain's concentration, retention and recall, overall benefiting the children’s success in learning
  • Provide your children with regular exercise and fresh air without sacrificing important curriculum demands
  • Make regular use of your school grounds
  • Raise attainment standards by engaging children in learning through activity, adventure and competition
  • Develop the children’s ability to work as a team
  • Children learn map reading skills and schools can get bespoke mapping of their school grounds
  • Children’s fitness and stamina builds, and they learn habits which will benefit their wellbeing and health for a lifetime
  • It’s fun, engaging and the children love it! 

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