Forest School

Children at St Mary’s have regular Forest School sessions.  As part of the wider educational mix, this offers a long term holistic learning process that aims to raise the children’s self-awareness and self-esteem through experiencing the natural world. Where the landscape itself becomes the learning environment, Forest School seeks to consolidate all areas of the curriculum and to build and extend knowledge. All sessions use speaking, listening and literacy skills such as exciting vocabulary which then permeates all areas of learning.

Making use of our exceptional village location we look at different habitats; starting in the school grounds and venturing further into the surrounding countryside to explore hedgerows, fields and woodland. Sessions typically include: plant and tree identification; natural arts and craft activities; storytelling; ‘mini beast’ hunting; shelter building and knot tying. Once core skills and behaviour indicators are secure, we help children to learn and manage risks through opportunities to cut and shape wood safely using a range of tools.

Children also have time to be quiet, reflect or to talk and share ideas. We nurture a deeper bond with nature and consider how much joy it brings us, and how we in turn should respect and look after our planet.

Latest News

Little Acorns at Thorncombe St Mary’s

We are delighted that our new nursery provision is now offering places from September 2021! Please contact the office to book a place.

Thorncombe Discovery

Children from Reception to Year 4 learned about the Countryside Code and explored our rural surroundings to identify trees on their way to Home Farm on the Sadborow Estate to learn about Arla organic dairy farming. To help children understand where our food comes...

Bikeability promotes road awareness

Over the last few weeks, children in Years 5 and 6 completed Bikeability Level 1 and Level 2 training in the ideal setting of our school grounds and Thorncombe’s village roads. This helped our children to build their knowledge and life skills so they can cycle safely...