Forest School

Forest School – another good thing to come from Scandinavia

For years, mothers have despaired at their children eating worms, climbing trees and playing in mud, but apparently that’s what they were supposed to be doing all along.  Mark Burr, 51, runs Wild Times Woodland Adventures, a Forest School in Maidstone, Kent, based in a 10-acre woods complete with small lake, composting toilet and a parachute shelter. The idea comes from Scandinavia, and let’s face it, they’ve had some pretty cool ideas over the years (Ikea, ABBA, Vikings…).  The theory is that being outdoors in nature is good for children’s emotional well-being and physical health, as well as their developmental processes.

In fact, it’s not just a theory anymore, there’s a mounting pile of evidence to back it up. It rings true with me too. Few of us can deny that we feel much better when we’re outside, (preferably when it’s warm and sunny), surrounded by nature’s beauty. Mark has a quote on his website, “It’s impossible to walk in the woods and be in a bad mood at the same time.” While I disagree with this statement, having endured many miserable hours out in the rain, I fully support the principle that being outdoors is good for the soul, weather permitting. Continue reading

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