What is different about Forest School? Creating a space for an alternative pedagogy in England

Waite, S and Goodenough, Alice ORCID: 0000-0003-0862-2894 (2018) What is different about Forest School? Creating a space for an alternative pedagogy in England. Journal of Outdoor and Environment Education, 21 (1). pp. 25-44. doi:10.1007/s42322-017-0005-2

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Forest School in the UK has arguably provided a space of pedagogical ‘difference’ whilst wider structural pressures have reduced the room for novelty and diversity in delivery of state education. This article explores how perceived ‘differences’ between everyday educational contexts can benefit the wellbeing of participants in Forest Education across different ages. It calls into question the application of play-based learning theory to underpin English Forest School as advocated by Leather in this issue. Drawing on Forest School principles, empirical evidence and the theory of cultural density, we examine how Forest School can present important cultural and material contrasts in English young people’s experience and argue for the importance of this function within this context. We critique aspects of the dilution of Forest School principles, arguing that in England, and perhaps other cultures where outdoor experiences have become relatively rare, it is important that Forest School is valued as a site of divergence from more common learning spaces and situations.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Forest school; Pedagogy; Wellbeing; Learner-led; Woodland
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GV Recreation Leisure > GV191.2 Outdoor Life. Outdoor recreation.
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
S Agriculture > SD Forestry
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > Countryside and Community Research Institute
Research Priority Areas: Place, Environment and Community
Depositing User: Ella Rowe
Date Deposited: 10 May 2021 14:45
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2022 17:45
URI: https://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/9655

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