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Forest School

At APTCOO we are blessed with the natural beauty and resource of the Thoresby Estate in Nottinghamshire;

our rural satellite centre Cameleon Lodge is set in the heart of Sherwood Forest. Our Forest School is

designed to be an inspirational learning process offering young people opportunities to achieve and

develop their confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in our woodland areas; it offers 

opportunities for holistic growth  supports play, exploration and supported risk taking in a natural outdoor setting.  


We believe that the Forest School methodology helps and facilitates more than knowledge development,

it enables learners to develop socially, emotionally, spiritually, physically, and intellectually. We aim to

create a safe, non-judgemental nurturing environment for learners to develop through experiential learning,

to try and try again until it works.  

Our approach to taking supported risks means that our learners continue to grow holistically, developing

their abilities to solve ‘live’ problems, building self-belief, resilience, and confidence. The Forest School six

key principles that shape and govern the Forest School ethos: 

  1. Forest School is a long-term process of regular sessions, rather than one-off or infrequent visits, the cycle of               planning, observation, adaptation and review links each session. 

  2. Forest School takes place in a woodland or natural environment to support the development of a lifelong              relationship between the learner and the natural world. 

  3. Forest School uses a range of learner-centred processes to create a community for being, development and learning. 

  4. Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent, and creative learners. 

  5. Forest School offers learners the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves. 

  6. Forest School is run by qualified Forest School practitioners, who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice. 

Feedback from our families:

"As a Mum, it was nice to receive some time to myself and know my daughter's needs are being met and she’s happy interacting with other adults and children. In an amazing countryside building being FREE and not being cooped in a play building or centre with other children. Getting dirty in mud, finding nature and learning different plants, fungi, insects, animals and life skills of fires, hiking and being safe! Thank you to all the staff who care and adore my daughter you hold a special place in our hearts."




Natural fence building, week by week progress;

great learning and fun for all involved

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