Return to the Forest Final Project Report

Created by Montgomeryshire OLW | Published 05.27.15

The Return to the Forest project delivered by Montgomeryshire OLW Network Group was a great success with everyone involved learning together.

The project provided a valuable resource of a 4 week woodland programme for early yrs / transition children, a 6 week woodland programme for Foundaion Phase children with special needs, a project outline of how to design and build a woodland area ofr children with special needs and a woodland themed songbook for young children. These are available in the resource section of the OLW website.

The main aims of the project were:

• Connecting with nature, restoring links with the natural  environment and appreciating all the outdoors has to offer for disadvantaged children.
• Building relationships with young children with Special Needs, their parents and families
• Building relationships  with a range of professionals
• Young people with SEN, doing, creating and working together for the benefit of others
• Understanding more about the learning needs and views of young children with special needs in relation to the outdoors
• Seeing the positive impact going to the forest has made on individuals, their learning and their families
• Sharing our programmes and how we set up a natural space to promote outdoor learning for young children with Special Needs
• Disseminating good practice  to outdoor learning professionals within the Outdoor Learning Wales network group and beyond– raising the profile of children with Special Needs– considerations for inclusiveness
• Knowing that it only takes a small space, a comparatively small budget to create a natural space that provides challenge; adventure; sensory experiences; and inspires’ awe and wonder’ in any child.

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