Outdoor & Community Learning

At Harlow Green, we have developed an environment and curriculum which takes children beyond the classroom and places them into their natural environment as well as their community.

Forest School

Harlow Green is different from most schools in that it is a Forest School.  The Forest School approach provides a hands-on, practical education in our outdoor environment. This part of the curriculum is managed by a qualified Forest School Leader – Miss Rowe – who continuously maintains and develops her professional practice. The Forest Education Community has put together the guiding principles for Forest Schools. These principles were agreed to ensure good practice across the country.

  • Forest School is a long-term process of regular sessions, rather than a one-off or infrequent visits; the cycle of planning, observation, adaptation and review links each session.
  • It takes place in a woodland or natural environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.
  • We use a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for development and learning.
  • Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.
  • It offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves.

Our approach at Harlow Green is centred on enabling children to develop a sense of independence and self-motivation, they become more courageous and can learn to realistically assess situations, are more self-reliant and opportunistic. This approach particularly supports the development of self-esteem and self-confidence. The focus in Forest School and Outdoor Learning is on short achievable tasks which then build in complexity based on observations of the children’s needs and interests.

Community Work

Developing children’s understanding about their local community and providing the opportunity to positively impact upon it is essential in developing the future generation.  Through the regular curriculum but also through our outdoor curriculum, children are involved in projects which allows them to work within the local community in a variety of ways and to actively engage within it.

Building a shaduf
Building a shaduf
Today Year 3 continued their investigations into building a ‘water moving device’ as one of the children described it. They are beginning to show a good understanding of the value of communication and planning,...
Last week at Angel Court.
Last week at Angel Court.
The children took these photos at our last summer session at Angel Court. We’ve had such a wonderful time and are always made to feel so welcome. Here you can see the children preparing...
Wonderful Wildflowers.
Wonderful Wildflowers.
    With the wonderfully varied British weather comes an abundance of plant growth. Year 1 continue to get to know our Forest School, investigating the plants, learning how to enjoy nature. Understanding how...
The art of Nature.
The art of Nature.
Using natural materials they collected Year 4 created collages of creatures, both real and fantastical. They demonstrated a real talent for applying the textures and shapes of the plants to depict the animals characteristics....
Placement Art
Placement Art
This week in Year 1 we took advantage of nature to create some placement art. In class the children were asked; Can you create a repeating pattern using natural materials? This lead to a...
Clay Creatures
Clay Creatures
Year 3 created a huge variety creatures using clay and natural materials. From spiders to llamas, ladybirds to Godzilla! The children then had to describe their creatures, their personality, where they live, what they...
Sunny Afternoons at Angel Court.
Sunny Afternoons at Angel Court.
  We spent a lovely afternoon in the garden, helping the residents to revamp their communal garden. Many hands made light work of the weeding and planting. Article 27 – We all have the...
Creating a woodland scene.
Creating a woodland scene.
Though not everyone has enjoyed the wet weather of late, the plants have certainly benefited. Year 1 children took advantage of this and were set off to collect leaves, grasses and interesting objects. Once...