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Forest School

blushWelcome to Chartham Forest School!smiley


Parent Information:

We are out whatever the weather!

First & foremost ALWAYS have a coat!

When it is cold:

Start with a base layer.

Instead of, or as well as a vest, put on a T-shirt, if there isn't a long-sleeved one a short-sleeved one will still add insulation to the body. 
A jumper, a thin one, followed by a thick one. At Chartham we don't insist on uniform for Forest School, so whatever will fit!
Trousers - with leggings or tights underneath - for boys or girls! I know an awful lot of motorcyclists of all genders who swear by wearing tights as a base layer!

Socks! 2 Pairs! Or wear one and send in another to wear over the top with wellies.
Gloves - these are tricky, as as soon as they are wet they add to the problem! I have known children arrive with plastic gloves UNDERNEATH their wooly ones, and children arrive with marigolds over the top of their gloves!! I've even seen sandwich bags held on with hair ties!!!
Hats and scarves are definitely a bonus.

THEN think about what to go on top. If there is rain or snow then something waterproof is very useful - but not always warm - hence the layers first.

Finally - if there is a chance your child will still end up with damp socks, wet gloves. or a sodden bottom from sitting in the snow/puddles, make sure there is something warm and dry to put on afterward!


The idea of Forest School started in Scandinavia, where it is much colder than the UK, and it still thrives there.

Forest School Safety


Even in the warm weather we recommend that children wear long sleeves and long trousers. This helps protect against bramble scratches, nettle stings, and insect bites - which are rife after the summer growth across our site!


Nettle stings are annoying, but scratches that draw blood could become infected as the brambles and bushes are not sterile. Insect bites may include TICKS which will latch on and stay, and could carry Lyme Disease. We do not have a prolific amount of ticks at Chartham, but they are resident across the UK and reside in grasses all over Kent. Children wearing shorts to school who walk on grass have the same opportunity for one to latch on as those children playing football on the field, enjoying a playpark, or exploring Forest School. 


The information below is useful for checking yourself and your child on a regular basis:


  1. Using fine-toothed tweezers, gently grip the tick as close to the skin as possible.
  2. Pull steadily away from the skin without twisting or crushing the tick.
  3. Wash your skin with water and soap afterward.
  4. Apply an antiseptic cream to the skin around the bite.


There is YouTube video here if you want more advice!


2023 - 2024 Autumn & Winter highlights!

When we decided to name our classes after trees we chose species that are thriving on our grounds.

We have Mountain Ashes, Beech hedges, assorted Birch Trees, a hidden Sweet Chestnut, lots of Elder, Hazel shrubs, Prickly Holly, Shady Maples, different Oaks, Tall Pines, Bouncy Sycamores, Bendy Willows, Dangerous Yews, and a Magnolia to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.


We trialed a Toddler Stay & Play session in Term 1. We hope to repeat sessions in Spring, so watch out for details on how to join in!

Forest School is one aspect of all the Outdoor Learning that goes on at Chartham. We have specific spaces, but these are shared with the whole school. Plus, the entire grounds are an amazing resource for extending Forest School and all aspects of the Outdoor Curriculum.

We constantly strive to improve the environment around us for children and nature

A member of Inspira Academy Trust, a charitable company limited by guarantee incorporated in England and Wales, with company number 13188733.