We're delighted to be able to offer Forest School as part of our curriculum at Bunscoill Rhumsaa, with staff members who are fully trained practitioners in this special area of learning. Forest School is an educational approach that takes learning beyond the traditional classroom setting and into the natural environment. It provides children with valuable opportunities to explore, discover, and connect with nature. Thanks to our friends at Milntown Estate, we are able to make use of the beautiful gardens and woodland areas on their estate, making for a true forest experience. Additionally to that we have the terrific nature reserve of Poyll Dooey on our doorstep, so our children are able to get deep into the great outdoors! It's great fun for everyone, and provides some of these wonderful benefits for our children:

  1. Physical and Mental Well-being: Spending time in nature has been proven to have positive effects on children's overall well-being. Forest School allows children to engage in physical activities like climbing trees, building shelters, and exploring the natural surroundings, which promotes physical fitness and enhances their motor skills. Additionally, being in nature has a calming effect on children's mental health, reducing stress and anxiety.
  2. Connection with Nature: Forest School encourages children to develop a deep connection with the natural world. Through hands-on experiences, they learn about plants, animals, and ecosystems, fostering a sense of awe, respect, and stewardship for the environment. This connection with nature also helps to develop a sense of responsibility towards sustainable practises and conservation.
  3. Social and Emotional Development: Forest School provides a unique setting for children to develop their social and emotional skills. Working together in small groups, children learn to communicate effectively, collaborate, problem-solve, and negotiate. They also develop resilience, adaptability, and self-confidence as they face challenges and overcome obstacles in the outdoor environment.
  4. Creativity and Imagination: The natural environment of Forest School stimulates children's creativity and imagination. They have the freedom to engage in open-ended play, which allows for self-expression, invention, and innovation. Building dens, creating artwork with natural materials, and storytelling are just a few examples of the creative activities that take place in Forest School.
  5. Learning Across the Curriculum: Forest School provides a rich context for learning across various subjects. It offers opportunities for hands-on exploration of science, geography, art, and even literacy and numeracy. Children can investigate habitats, measure tree heights, write nature-inspired poetry, and engage in other cross-curricular activities that deepen their understanding of the world around them.

By incorporating Forest School into our curriculum, we aim to provide our primary school children with a holistic and enriching educational experience that nurtures their physical, emotional, social, and cognitive development.