Outdoor Learning

Forest School and Duke of Edinburgh

Outdoor Learning Classroom– Tom Spendlove

Topic Message:

Welcome to North Ridge’s Outdoor Classroom! All of the pupils at North Ridge will have an opportunity through the year to experience outdoor Learning in a safe environment in which they will be free to explore and investigate. This half term will allow for the pupils to become more aware of their surroundings and learn how to have safe experiences in a natural environment. We will also be linking in lots of topic work; Primary classes will look at There’s No Place Like Home, where they will get to build shelters and dens for bugs, mammals, themselves and even our very own Forest School Fairies! The Secondary classes will become nature detectives, helping to investigate all of the different goings on in our outdoor space!

Week Commencing 27th September

The weather has been a deciding factor this week for Outdoor Learning! For those classes that weren’t graced with a heavy downpour or blustery winds we could still go out and explore. Beaver Class were making the journey sticks this week, as they had had a good practice using the loppers the week before. Fox and Rabbit Class were painting with natural paintbrushes and making creations in the mud kitchen. Mole and Deer Class were the groups that got caught out in the rain, so we explored their topic of ‘There’s No Place like Home’, focusing on how we can be comfortable in bad weather (the answer was making hot chocolate!) Otter Class were introduced to another tool: the billhook; they practiced working in pairs to chop firewood to stay warm. Squirrel Class were learning how to tie a clove hitch in order to tie sticks together in order to make a game of Naughts and Crosses. Seal Class had their story outside, and are beginning to find the confidence to explore the space and the different materials around them. Finally, Owl class need a special mention as their sessions are after this blog is submitted for the week, and they always get left out! The Owls have done some amazing exploring and investigation work, and have really taken ownership of building the bug hotels!


WOW moment goes to Deer Class for staying focused through the entire afternoon!


Stars of the Week go to Mckenzie Rigget in Beavers, Kenzi-Dean in Otters, and William and Brianne in Squirrels for all showing tremendous determination and tenacity when using a ferro rod to start a fire.


Week Commencing 20th September 2021

This week has seen the classes at North Ridge do lots of different things during Outdoor Learning. Primary classes have made traditional journey sticks that Native Americans and Aboriginal people used to help remember where they have travelled as well as be a visual aid when re-telling stories of their adventures. To make their journey sticks, pupils were introduced to loppers, and they were made aware of how to use them properly with a partner so that they were safe. This encourages lots of independent communication between peers.

Secondary classes also used tools, but they were using them to help recycle willow for the bug hotels! Before they worked on the bug hotels, secondary classes were out and about on mini beast hunts, looking around the Outdoor Classroom to see what they could find hiding under logs or in the trees!

Finally, a few classes were introduced to the infamous Kelly Kettle, as the weather will soon start to turn for the worst! When we’re still outside in the wind, rain and/or snow come winter, we’ll be able to have a warm drink to keep us comfortable!


WOW goes to Mole Class for their excellent listening skills during the safety tool talk and the Kelly Kettle demonstration


Stars of the Week goes to Lola Morton and Lilly Richmond, for their excellent interaction and creativity in the mud kitchen!

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