Primary pupils at Derby Grammar School have been experiencing the great outdoors in a taster session designed to showcase a new Forest School club that is launching in the New Year.

Forest School after-school club will run once a week from January 2019 as part of expansion plans which will see the school welcoming boys into Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 for the first time.

The school has traditionally offered places from Year 3 upwards but recently announced that due to increased demand, places will be made available for younger years from September 2019. Plans are in the pipeline to invest in the school’s facilities over the coming months in order to prepare age-appropriate learning and play spaces – including the introduction of Forest School.

More than 50 boys, from Years Three to Six, took part in a Forest School session ahead of its official launch. The boys learnt how to make a fire with help and guidance from Forest School leader Becky Hill.

She said: “I talked to the boys about how to light a fire and the different types of wood that need to be used. We discussed assessing their own safety and being aware of the fire and the correct position to be in so that they can move away from the fire quickly if they need to.

“They were very engaged in the session and at the end I asked them all to tell me one thing that they had learnt and they all said something different.”

April Sly, Head of Primary School, said everyone was excited about the launch of Forest School at Derby Grammar. She said: “We have the most wonderful grounds and we really wanted to use them so we thought that Forest School would be a good way of doing that.

“It’s all about learning skills for life. The boys work on teamwork, being aware of danger, taking responsible risks in a safe environment and being outdoors. They are very inquisitive and really excited about Forest School, it’s taken quite a lot of preparation but we are thrilled to finally be launching this club which will provide fantastic opportunities for our younger pupils.”

Forest School offers all learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees.