Dyfi Outdoor Learning Wales Network Group

The Dyfi OLW Network Group was established in 2001 with the aim of raising awareness of the woodland environment and its many resources to the public, particularly young people.  It is one of two network groups working within the only UNESCO designated Biosphere Reserve in Wales.

Over the past eleven years the group has provided woodland education projects which highlight the interrelationship between people, woodlands and the potential resources, thus reinforcing the principles of the Dyfi Biosphere of sustainable relationships between the people, their culture, nature and the local economy.

Projects delivered have included:  the building of a roundhouse on the grounds of Ysgol Bro Dyfi, a Tree Nursery project in primary schools, the building of a timber frame outdoor classroom in Ysgol Gynradd Machynlleth, an international Forest School skills share day, a programme of Forest School sessions for home educating families and taster sessions introducing children to  coniferous and deciduous woodlands, biodiversity, the uses of timber and the three key principles of the Dyfi Biosphere.

In 2011 the Dyfi OLW/FEI  Group collaborated to share their expertise with each other and schools across the Dyfi Biosphere.  A pack of easy to follow lesson plans with accompanying resources was created and tested by a local primary and secondary school.  The Ceredigion OLW/FEI Group then funded teacher training on how to use the pack in a woodland environment near to schools.

Other projects run through the group include skill share days at Cae Poeth nature reserve where adults and children explore biodiversity, learn how to use timber to build steps, paths and hurdle fencing.  The site is currently being prepared for a transitions project between the local primary and secondary schools in 2013.

2012 saw the collaboration of Forest School Leaders in the group to support the Outside Education's Footprints in the Woods project.  Local artists shared their skills with the children and an art exhibition is planned for the local commmunity to enjoy.

The Dyfi Group's Woodlands of the Dyfi Valley project was presented to Forest Pedagogs from across the world at the 7th European Forest Pedagogics Conference to demonstrate successful partnership working in Education for Sustainable Development.

Please see uploaded resources and documents for further information about the projects mentioned.

The group meets bi-monthly and welcomes all interested parties from the Dyfi Valley and surrounding areas, see events for future meeting dates.

For more information please email sue.williams@naturalresourceswales.gov.uk