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Embracing the Great Outdoors: The Magic of Forest Schools and Outdoor Learning in Early Years


Embracing the Great Outdoors: The Magic of Forest Schools and Outdoor Learning in Early Years

Today, we're going to dive headfirst into the enchanting world of forest schools and outdoor learning for our little ones. This type of learning has numerous benefits, such as improved physical development and enhanced creativity, as well as allowing children to develop themselves through healthy engagement with risk, problem solving and self discovery, all within a natural outdoor environment. Here at Kindred, we view the great outdoors as simply an extension of our nurseries, and here’s why… 

Unleashing Creativity and Imagination 

One of the most remarkable benefits of forest schools and outdoor learning in the early years is the boundless scope for creativity and imagination. Unlike traditional indoor classroom settings, outdoor environments encourage children to think outside the box. Rocks become building blocks for castles, leaves transform into imaginary creatures, and a simple stick can become a sword, a paintbrush, or a treasure map. The possibilities are as endless as the great outdoors itself! 


Building Resilience and Confidence 

Outdoor settings offer a unique opportunity for children to build resilience and confidence. When they climb a tree, conquer a challenging hill, or successfully build a shelter, they gain a sense of accomplishment and self-assurance. These experiences teach them that they can overcome obstacles, handle uncertainty, and adapt to new situations – invaluable life skills that will serve them well throughout their journey. 

A Lesson in our Environment 

Forest schools and outdoor learning instil a deep love and respect for nature from a young age. Little ones who spend time in natural settings tend to develop a strong connection with the environment. They learn about the delicate balance of ecosystems, the importance of conservation, and the wonders of our planet. By fostering this sense of stewardship, we are nurturing a generation of future environmental advocates and eco-warriors. 


Enhanced Physical Health 

In a world increasingly dominated by screens and sedentary activities, forest schools and outdoor learning ensure that children get their daily dose of physical activity. Running, climbing, jumping, and exploring nature keeps them active and healthy. It's a refreshing break from carpet time and focus activities, and helps combat the rising concerns of childhood obesity and related health issues. 

Improved Social Skills 

When children interact with their peers in an outdoor environment, they learn crucial social skills. They collaborate to build a fort, share their minibeast discoveries, and engage in imaginative play. The absence of the traditional classroom structure fosters a more inclusive and cooperative atmosphere, where children can learn to communicate, negotiate, and resolve conflicts effectively. 


Connection with Seasonal Changes 

Forest schools and outdoor learning also provide an opportunity for children to connect with the natural world's seasonal changes. They learn about the cycle of life, the beauty of changing leaves in the autumn, the frostiness of winter, and the rebirth of spring. These connections with the seasons not only deepen their understanding of nature but also give them a sense of grounding in a world that is constantly evolving. 

Reduced Stress and Improved Well-being 

Studies have shown that spending time in natural surroundings can reduce stress and anxiety in children. The soothing sounds of the forest, the calming effect of running water, and the sights and smells of the great outdoors create a peaceful and rejuvenating atmosphere that is beneficial for children's mental well-being. 

Explore one of our Forest Schools:
Spotlight on Kindred Bromley North


Our beautiful Forest School at Kindred Bromley North gives children the opportunity to engage in hands-on activities, such as building shelters or exploring wildlife, which can improve their problem-solving skills and encourage a love of nature. These experiences provide a unique and valuable learning experience for young children, particularly within an inner-city nursery such as Kindred Bromley North, that nurtures their curiosity and fosters a sense of wonder about the natural world.


At Kindred, we work hard to incorporate forest school activities across all of our nurseries, and we are investing in many team members to become qualified forest school teachers with our hope of being able to offer forest school experiences across all our nurseries, no matter their location.
Speak to your local nursery to find out more about our outdoor learning approach.

By embracing the outdoors, we're not only providing our little ones with an education that goes beyond pen and paper, but also creating lasting memories and a profound love for the natural world. So let's encourage our little explorers to step outside, get their hands and knees muddy, and embark on adventures in the wild. The benefits are only as endless as their imaginations!