The staff and pupils at St. Paul’s Catholic Primary School, Poynton are celebrating this Autumn, as they are proudly awarded a level 3 Forest School certificate – the highest level for Forest School Leader Training. Initiated several years ago, the children, together with Forest School Leader, Sarah Johnson, have been transforming a heavily wooded part of the school into a ‘wild’, and yet controlled, safe learning environment.

Here, children learn how to assess risk and make sensible and informed decisions about how to deal with unfamiliar and unpredictable situations, participating in activities such as exploring, climbing trees, making fires, using tools to build shelters and making dens. Miss Johnson, said, “The children are able to develop confidence, self-esteem, independence, empathy and social skills, in an outdoor environment proven to promote happiness, wellbeing and respect for the natural world. It’s easy to see why the children enjoy their time in forest school so much and why they often report that it is one of the very best things they do at school.”