Lessons from a forest school

forest school bridge

Pupils at a forest school in Sussex were given the challenge to construct a bridge over a stream using only materials they could find in the woods. They tackled this task with enthusiasm, working in teams to discover what worked and what didn't. Each resulting bridge was unique. Being cold and wet seemed only to heighten the children's determination and their sense of triumph when they achieved their goal.

These students may not have realised they were having a lesson in physics and an introduction to engineering. Nor did they realise they were demonstrating Froebel's point that when children are intrinsically motivated they have amazing perseverance. What they did know is that they solved some very real problems through trial and error, and that they had loads of fun in spite of wind and weather!

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