Why have schools signed up to FS?
Forest School is something that many schools have caught on to in the last 10 years. Originating from the Scandinavian countries that use this method for all children up to the age of 7. Educators in the UK were noticing a need for children to be outside more, in the fresh air, doing more practical, active hands-on learning and Forest school seemed to be the solution for this.
Forest School as a stand-alone experience for the children is a powerful tool and pushes for more risky play so children can develop physically and mentally. However, the true and proper form of the Forest School Ethos is not that being practised in many schools. It is actually outdoor learning.
Why have schools trained in Forest School then converted to outdoor learning?
Schools are not being informed enough of what Forrest Schools is and are buying into it, to find it’s not always linked to the curriculum and is a side step from any academic learning entirely. Although we look to Scandinavian countries (some of the happiest in the world) and commend their brave decisions to not teach any academic subjects until age 7, the UK unfortunately is not there yet. So due to the accountability required from educators in the UK to deliver the curriculum, teachers start to link it in. Ultimately now teaching outdoor learning.
So why don’t schools simply start by training their staff on Outdoor Learning first?
Our point exactly. Wales has also recognised this. With almost every school in Wales having trained FS leaders but now realising that the next step is enhancing outdoor learning. Wales is the first country in the UK to now embrace outdoor learning as a teaching pedagogy that they have woven into their new 2022 curriculum. It is also important to note FS Training is costly at around £800 per trainee and because of this most schools train one or two members of staff. Then one of those staff members leave and the whole drive to teach more outside is lost until you train them up again. There are many amazing external organisations out there that will provide pure FS sessions should you want to include this cost-effectively. No fuss, mess, cost of kit or the fear a staff member leaves and you are left with nothing. The success we see comes from those schools that train the whole school and have a collaborative move for change.
What is the best way to train your staff on outdoor learning?
The Muddy Puddle Teacher is your answer! We are teachers and forest school leaders and we have created revolutionary training that empowers teachers to want to teach more outside and we give them the practical skills and ideas to do that. Merging all that is great and manageable with Forest School with the curriculum, while thinking about all the issues that would prevent a teacher from sustaining this all year round. Our training was created over a 2-year project with the support from councils and local schools and now is trademarked and much loved. See the reviews.
The Muddy Puddle Teacher Approach has now reached thousands of hundreds of schools both in the UK where we originated and in Europe. We have trained in over 5000 schools, 50K social media followers, and 17k Individual Educators subscribed to our resources and course. That’s just in three years!
Once trained, we don’t stop there. We provide yearly mentorship to our schools and trusts, giving staff access to over 700+ downloadable resources and 24/7 access to live chat with a teacher and further zoom training top-ups should they need them. We are so passionate about the benefits the children will gain from MPT and balancing indoor teaching pedagogies with the Muddy Puddle Teacher Pedagogy, that we have everything in place to ensure you succeed all year long.
We provide online options, face-to-face training and options for all budgets. Just chat with you we can tell you how other schools have found a way with little funding. Our services can also be paid for by Sports Premium. We are also favourably looked at as ways to start developing more sustainable methods in schools and trusts, a diverse method for supporting Nerodivergent children and also supporting the wellbeing of staff. Additionally, with the new Ofsted framework focussing on personal development this approach can be a big tick in this area. Chat with us and we can tell you why.
Make a start
Want to discuss more? Book a chat with one of our teachers/consultants please book here. We offer out-of-hours times for those that need this.
Alternatively, we have a free taster course and 60+ free resources for you to give us a try!