Views from the staffroom: Forest School in English primary schools

Journal article


Kemp, N. 2019. Views from the staffroom: Forest School in English primary schools . Journal of Adventure Education & Outdoor Learning.
AuthorsKemp, N.
Abstract

Forest School is a form of outdoor learning that is increasingly popular within English primary schools although little is known about the experiences of teaching staff who engage with it. This paper identifies three prevailing discourses within existing Forest School literature in relation to schools and teachers: as “critical stakeholders”, “unenlightened” and “consumers.” Drawing upon semi-structured interviews conducted with teaching staff from seven rural primary schools in South East England, a fourth discourse is proposed. In this additional discourse, teaching staff are “agentic” and engagement with Forest School is an act of resistance against the mainstream standards agenda. In a further act of resistance schools adapt the Forest School approach to fit their specific context. This raises a dilemma for the Forest School movement about the extent to which it is willing to support the agency of teaching professionals by providing flexibility to adapt its principles to meet school priorities.

KeywordsAgency; Forest School; Outdoor learning; Primary schools; Primary education
Year2019
JournalJournal of Adventure Education & Outdoor Learning
PublisherTaylor & Francis
ISSN1472-9679
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/14729679.2019.1697712
Official URLhttps://doi.org/10.1080/14729679.2019.1697712
Publication dates
Online27 Nov 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted25 Nov 2019
Deposited13 Feb 2020
Permalink -

https://repository.canterbury.ac.uk/item/8qv3v/views-from-the-staffroom-forest-school-in-english-primary-schools

Accepted author manuscript

  • 2
    total views
  • 1
    total downloads
  • 2
    views this month
  • 1
    downloads this month

Related outputs

Conclusion: Stepping into sustainable futures: actions, developments and networks
Kemp, N., Wall, T., Puntha, H., Molthan-Hill, P, Puntha, S. and Baden, D. 2020. Conclusion: Stepping into sustainable futures: actions, developments and networks. in: Molthan-Hill, P., Luna, H., Wall, T., Puntha, H. and Baden, D. (ed.) Storytelling for Sustainability in Higher Education: An Educator's Handbook Routledge. pp. 386-398
Education for sustainability in early childhood education: sustainability transformation through collaboration
Kemp, N. and Bolshaw, P. 2020. Education for sustainability in early childhood education: sustainability transformation through collaboration. in: Prioritizing Sustainability Education: A Comprehensive Approach Abingdon Routledge. pp. 161-175
The educational potential of the Harmony Project
Kemp, N., Pagden, A. and J. Marshall. 2019. The educational potential of the Harmony Project. Canterbury Christ Church University.
Curriculum review of ESD at CCCU: a case study in health and wellbeing
Consorte-McCrea, A., Griggs, C. and Kemp, N. 2017. Curriculum review of ESD at CCCU: a case study in health and wellbeing. in: Leal Filho, W. (ed.) Implementing Sustainability in the Curriculum of Universities: Approaches, Methods and Projects Springer International Publishing. pp. 247-262
It’s contagious! developing sustainability perspectives in academic life at a UK university
Scoffham, S. and Kemp, N. 2014. It’s contagious! developing sustainability perspectives in academic life at a UK university. in: Integrating Sustainability Thinking in Science and Engineering Curricula, Switzerland Springer International Publishing. pp. 89-102
The ‘connecting children and nature network’: building a collaborative partnership for change
Kemp, N. 2015. The ‘connecting children and nature network’: building a collaborative partnership for change. Local Economy.
Review 'the Palgrave international handbook of alternative education. edited by Helen E. Lees and Nel Noddings. Macmillan Publishers Ltd: London 2016'
Kemp, N. 2017. Review 'the Palgrave international handbook of alternative education. edited by Helen E. Lees and Nel Noddings. Macmillan Publishers Ltd: London 2016'. British Journal of Educational Studies.
The place of forest school in English primary schools: senior leader perspectives
Kemp, N. and Pagden, A. 2018. The place of forest school in English primary schools: senior leader perspectives. Education 3-13.
Understanding the therapeutic benefits of engagement with the natural environment within the Dandelion Time approach: a review of literature
Kemp, N. and Watts, T. 2017. Understanding the therapeutic benefits of engagement with the natural environment within the Dandelion Time approach: a review of literature. Canterbury Christ Church University.
Inside out and upside down (Learning, Teaching and Research strand)
Vujakovic, P. and Kemp, N. 2014. Inside out and upside down (Learning, Teaching and Research strand). 18th Environmental Association of Universities and Colleges Annual Conference. Nottingham Trent University