The sessions on Wednesdays will include a welcoming circle, a variety of activities and crafts, songs and games, and hot chocolate for the closing circle.
Thursdays will begin with an opening circle at 1015. Please make sure you have dropped off your child before the start of the opening circle so we can begin promptly. This will include a song and a sensory activity. For this term, we will be exploring life cycles and food chains. Lunch will be at 12pm and will be followed with a seasonal story or poem. There will be time for free play and long-term projects either side of lunch, as well as a chance to go on nature walks or help with the Anglo-Saxon allotment and other conservation projects. At 130 we will have tidy up time and a hot drink in time for our closing circle and song at 145. Pick up will be at 2pm.
Parents are required to stay with children under 5 years at both sessions, and for the Wednesday sessions. They are welcome to stay on Thursdays if they would like to, and are invited to join in with any of the activities. Forest School is about developing community, and is not limited to children. You will need to sign in and out at the reception desk and show them a valid heritage pass for entry each session.
Fees and Attendance
Fees will be invoiced prior to the start of a six-week block and are payable within 7 days. This is payable for a full block of six sessions and no refunds can be given after the start of term. If you wish to withdraw your child from any of the sessions, please give half a term’s notice. The Wednesday sessions can be paid for individually.
We will take a register at each session and would appreciate as much notice as possible if your child will be absent from a session. Anyone coming onto the site must be wearing a Nature Explorers Lanyard or Wristband, which you will receive at the first session.
Please provide your child with a packed lunch if they are attending the Thursday morning session. Please make sure you have informed me of any food allergies, and do not include nuts with your child’s lunch. I will be encouraging the children to all eat together, with the adults, and will mostly have our lunch outside (under cover if necessary). Occasionally we may be able to cook on the fire, but otherwise there will be no facilities to heat food. Your child will also need to bring a piece of fruit for morning snack, which will be during our opening circle.
Your child will need to have the following named equipment and clothing for the sessions:
A waterproof coat and trousers and a sturdy pair of wellies or walking boots.
Gloves, hat and scarf for cold weather (thermals are useful too!)
Long hair tied up (or at least something to tie it up with when we have a fire)
A bottle of water
A bag to put wet things in
Long-sleeved top and trousers to minimise the risk of tick bites
There may be occasions when an external visit would be beneficial to enhance the children’s learning experience. I will consult parents first if we need to transport the children to a museum or activity. I also intend to invite guest speakers and tutors to come and run one-off workshops at the venue some weeks, I will extend an invitation to parents for some of these events.
Behaviour and Discipline
I expect the children to show respect for the venue that they are using, whether outdoors or indoors. It is extremely important when in the forest setting that they listen carefully to instructions to keep them safe. The children are expected to be well-mannered, tolerant, honest and considerate of other people and other people’s property. I will always treat all the children as if they were my own, and with the respect that I would hope to receive from them. West Stow is obviously a site of huge historical importance, and we are very lucky to be allowed to take part in conservation and protection of the forest there. Some of the Country Park is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and we will be expected to take special care when exploring.
Health and Safety
Please discuss any medical conditions your child may have, including allergies, and let me know of any medication they require in an emergency. I have completed a level 3 outdoor paediatric first aid course in the last year, and there will always be two adults present at each session.
The health and safety of each of your children is extremely important to me. However, in the event of an emergency, either an accident or if the child becomes unwell during my session, I will attempt to notify the parents immediately using the emergency contact details you provide me.
Please do not let your child attend a session if they are unwell, and not for at least 48 hours after any episode of sickness or diarrhoea. Please notify me immediately in the case of communicable diseases, so that the other parents can be informed.
If your child needs to bring medicine to a session, please make sure it is clearly labelled and you have explained the instructions of the prescribed dosage at the start of the session to me.
I have completed the NSPCC Child Protection training course, a leading on Safeguarding course, and a level 3 outdoor paediatric first aid course. I am a qualified Level 3 Forest School Practitioner and I hold an Enhanced DBS certificate for working with children. There will always be at least two adults present at each of my sessions. I am assisted by a variety of volunteer parents. All of them have read and signed the policies and procedures and the Nature Explorers Handbook. Several have completed first aid training and safeguarding training. All sensible precautions will be taken to ensure that children have minimal risk while they are with me. See CPD Portfolio for more information. Children who are accompanied by an adult remain the responsibility of that adult throughout the session.
For more information, please contact Steph at email@example.com or visit the website at www.natureexplorers.org.uk or the facebook page at www.facebook.com/stephnatureexplorers
West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village,
Icklingham Road, West Stow,
Suffolk, IP28 6HG 01284 728718