If you go down to the woods today
Forest Kindergarten (FK) is based on the forest school learning process which models an outdoor school approach for the Early Years and is based around child-centred learning through play. FK offers young children frequent, regular play opportunities outdoors in a natural setting, whatever the weather. In a forward thinking move by South Lanarkshire College (SLC), all HNC Childhood Practice students at the college now participate in FK training as part of their HNC award.
FK aims to foster children’s connections to the natural world, through allowing children to choose activities that suit them while playing outside, observed by practitioners, and, as well as developing key skills they also learn to care for their environment. The introduction of the unit (which is supplementary) to the HNC Childhood Practice qualification has proved to be innovative and progressive in meeting current sector demands and equips students with skills valued by employers. Science proves that outdoor play enhances personal child development and improves emotional, intellectual, and behavioural development.
By delivering teaching outside during the Covid-19 pandemic, the FK unit has allowed children and students to learn face-to-face with classmates and tutors, while other students are restricted to learning online. Playing and working outside lessens the risk of students or children touching an infected surface or contracting infection in the air.
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