6 Week Programme for yr3/4 – Native Americans

Forest Schools:  6 Week Programme Plan

 

Theme: Native Americans

 

Age group: Year 3 and 4 pupils mixed ability

Resources: Native American Resources (click on link for all resources!)

Planned Learning Outcomes:

  • To promote personal, social and emotional development
  • To build confidence amongst the participants enabling them to feel comfortable and confidence in working in a different environment by providing support, space, time and achieveable tasks.
  • To develop team work and co-operation by encouraging positive social interaction, providing opportunities to work together ensuring inclusion and participation, develop communication skills and provide challenges that enable all to succeed and develop in line with their learning style and using the skills and ideas of others.
  • To develop communication and listening skills by providing a range of opportunities for different types of communication, creating a safe and supporting learning space, providing opportunity for empathy, reflection and space and time to talk and listen, make choices and decisions.
  • To support participants in understanding themselves by enabling them to take responsibilities, assess risk and take challenges, to help motivate and regulate themselves and others.
  • To become more aware and knowledgeable about the environment they are in and relate this to their lives.
  • To use the term theme of ‘North American Indians’ to link in to the curriculum based in school work to enhance and develop learning with different opportunities.

Please Note:

The session programmes below, activities and plan will adapt, develop and change from session to session depending on group outcomes, needs, progression, requirements and observations and following discussion with participants, adults and staff.

In School Preliminary Sessions in the school grounds:

Two preliminary sessions have been scheduled as I am an ‘outside’ practitioner coming in to the school and do not already know the pupils.  These sessions are planned to mesh with the communications strategy leading in to the Forest School sessions so the pupils, staff, parents and carers are aware of what is happening and feel comfortable and confident with this.   It will also enable me to prepare sessions that meet the needs of the participants and plan achievable but challenging activities that will stimulate the group.

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required Comments
1 ½ hours  SCHOOL OUTDOOR AREA
  • Meet the group, start to learn names
  • Start to build a relationship with the group members
  • Observe how the group work together at present
  • Identify any immediate needs/requirements
  • Prepare for Forest Schools – what will they need, what is it etc.
  • Use pupil input to develop planning, decide on pupils to track/focus observations
  • Meeting each other
  • Sitting together in the school field under the trees on the sit up-ons
  • Name games – animal, name and action
  • What is Forest Schools?  What to expect, what might they need to bring/consider?
  • Simple ground rules and procedures
  • Blind fold game – bat and moth, leading and trust game
  • Giving a piece of cord – teach an overhand knot
  • Circle time – hopes and fears – reflect on what they know so far and use to inform session planning
  • Sit up ons
  • Cords (1 each)
  • Blindfolds
  • Meeting each other
  • Sitting together in the school field under the trees on the sit up-ons
  • Name games – animal, name and action
  • What is Forest Schools?  What to expect, what might they need to bring/consider?
  • Simple ground rules and procedures
  • Blind fold game – bat and moth, leading and trust game
  • Giving a piece of cord – teach an overhand knot

Circle time – hopes and fears – reflect on what they know so far and use to inform session planning

  • Sit up ons
  • Cords (1 each)

Blindfolds

 
1 ½ hours SCHOOL OUTDOOR AREA
  • Continue to get to know the group
  • See how they work together
  • Build on initial skills
  • Reinforce the ‘feel’ and ‘process’ of Forest Schools and check preparations.
  • Sitting in a circle – name game – something that’s made you happy.
  • Safety and risk management discussion
  • Animal snap game
  • Knots practice – overhand and overhand on the bight
  • Collecting a stick to specifications
  • Knots – closed clove hitch
  • String and knots free play
  • Circle time – what I’ve done well today
  • Sit up ons
  • Sitting in a circle – name game – something that’s made you happy.
  • Safety and risk management discussion
  • Animal snap game
  • Knots practice – overhand and overhand on the bight
  • Collecting a stick to specifications
  • Knots – closed clove hitch
  • String and knots free play

Circle time – what I’ve done well today

Sit up ons  

Forest Schools – Session 1

Pre-session (boundary markers up, name tags around boundary, 10 natural objects collected and hidden, short pieces of string pre-cut)

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required * Comments
9.30 – 10.00**

  • Build confidence in using the area and start to build familiarity and take ownership of the site and environment
  • Team work and co-operation
  • Developing opportunities for communication in a safe space.
  • Opportunities for keeping safe and assessing and taking appropriate risk
  • To take responsibilities
  • To motivate self and others
  • Skills – natural objects selection, knots, motor skills development, start to be able to speak about themselves and their own expectations.
  • Arrive on site – pupils probably need rest so collect equipment from car establish seating circle in the ‘base’ safe area.
  • Name game (name, animal, action) “How are you feeling today” or pass
  • Emergency/first aid, members of public, loose dogs, rubbish and litter, animal faces and hand washing procedures. Pupils own four layer site risk assessment.
  • Boundary game – collect your name (previously hung around boundary edge) and a stick to be your ‘journey stick’ explain concept of North American Indian journey sticks – when walking boundary together highlight routes, risks, wee tree area etc.
  • Knot practice – clove hitch name tag to journey stick.  Show the Forest tokens – gold medals, feather, leaves.  Pupils can help themselves to these tokens and they can be written on or drawn on and attached to their journey stick as a record of things enjoyed, things done well, things learned (natural objects and decoration can also be tied to the stick to signify things for the pupils).  Pupils and adults can also award tokens to each other when they see someone doing something really well, or they have been helpful etc.
  • Name tags for each participant
  • String and scissors
  • Sticks
  • Wool
  • Forest tokens
  • Own information resource sheet on journey sticks and talking sticks
 
10.00 – 10.30

  • Build familiarity with the site and environment
  • Increase knowledge about the environment
  • Develop observation and investigation – visual focus
  • 10 Natural objects – scavenger hunt to develop observation.  10 objects hidden under a sheet/coat.  Show the pupils for 25 seconds and re-cover.  They then go out and try and collect 10 things the same.  Share with group and see if they match.  Can work alone or in pairs.
10 natural objects  
10.30 – 10.45

  • Communication and co-operation opportunity
Practice hand washing routine and drink and snack time. Pupils own drink and snack  
10.45 – 11.15

  • Environmental awareness
  • Links to curriculum work on Native Americans
  • Team work and co-operation development
  • Confidence in the environment
  • Listening skills – auditory focus
    • .
  • Silent hunting:  Tracking and stalking group game – All lie on floor with eyes shut.  Lift up a finger each time they hear a different kind of noise or sound.  Link to the Native American concept of becoming the animal they are tracking.
  • Half group stay on ground listening and other half of group lay a trail or track with signs and signals that will direct pupils around the site to find what they have been hunting.  Swap over if time
Box with tracking reward tokens in  
11.15 – 11.30

  • Language development
  • Confidence, reflective and personal, social, emotional development
  • Positive social interaction
  • Circle time in base:  Hand round one natural object – each pupil to say a word that describes it – how it feels, smells, looks, sounds etc.
  • Chance to add tokens to journey stick.
  • Name, animal and action – “something I did well this morning”.
   

* From this point onwards resources automatically on site will include – emergency bag and contents, tarpaulin shelter, sit up ons, string, scissors, pens and pencils, forest tokens, wool, handbook file, comfort bag with hand washing kit and the pupil’s own knot practice cords.

**  Times are only for an outline only and are totally flexible.  If children are engaged and interested, want to continue, need more time, are bored of the activity, have finished, need a break, weather changes, want to do their own thing and play etc. this will be accounted for and adaptations made.

 

Forest Schools – Session 2

Before walking to site explain the background to how some Native Americans were named and allow pupils to think up their own Native American name if they wish.

Pre-session (boundary markers up)

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required * Comments
9.30 – 9.50**

  • Continue to build familiarity with the site and environment
  • Opportunities for keeping safe and assessing and taking appropriate risk
  • To motivate self and others
  • Environmental awareness
  • Site arrival, equipment out, circle set up, risk assessment
  • Name game – name, animal or Native American name and action.  A quality I have that would make me a good member of our tribe. (Remember Journey sticks and tokens).  Procedure reminders
  • Boundary walk – around the boundary together each taking turns to lead and ‘becoming’ a certain animal, move in that way.  Group guess the animal.
Own information resource sheet on Native American naming traditions  
9.50 – 10.30

  • Skills: Knots, shelter creation
  • Team work and co-operation, opportunities for social interaction, inclusion and participation – kinaesthetic focus
  • Challenge self and others
  • Reflective and positive feedback opportunity developing communication.
  • Knots – teach a round turn and two half hitches.  Remind about clove hitch, overhand knot etc.
  • How would Native Americans survive in the environment?  What would they need?  Talk about food, shelter, water etc.  Discuss together how tarpaulins and ropes could be used for a temporary shelter.  In four groups work together using tarpaulins, rope and string to create a shelter for their group members.
  • Show what they have done and how they’ve done it – ‘two stars and a wish’
  • String
  • 4 tarpaulins
  • 8 lengths of rope
 
10.30 – 10.45

  • Social interactions development
  • Break – hand clean and drink and snacks.  Can have them in their shelters if desired.
Full Flask, cups, drinking choc  
10.45 – 11.15

  • Skills:  knots, materials and resources selection, self selecting groups
  • Chance to play/choose – personal, social and emotional development and use preferred learning styles
  • Knots – square lashing, collect sticks and work in pairs.
  • Show and play the traditional Indian campfire stick game, explain Indian musical rattle and the information posts.
  • Free choice – Individually, in pairs, in groups however they feel comfortable start to develop or create their own game / instrument / information post. (Have available other activities – micro hike, magnifiers, identification charts etc. if they’d rather do this).
  • Indian game/rattle example
  • String
  • Charcoal, pens, pencils
  • Wool
  • Magnifying glasses, identification charts, pots
  • Own information sheet on instruments, campfire game and information/hunting points.
 
11.15 – 11.40

  • Opportunity for confidence and esteem building
  • Reflective thinking and opportunity to look at progression.  Begin to connect how their activities and experiences make them feel.
  • Circle time – share what they have done so far and how it’s going – how many feathers in their head dress would they give themselves?
  • Name, animal, action – share something on my journey stick.
   

 

 

Forest Schools – Session 3

Pre-session (boundary markers up)  – set up A frame for if required,

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required * Comments
9.30 – 9.50**

  • Awareness of the environment and how this impacts on your self
  • Visual focus boundary game
  • Site arrival, equipment out, circle set up, risk assessment.
  • Name game – name, animal or Native American name and action.  Your favourite part of our site and why.
  • Boundary game – go and collect something interesting from the boundary share with the group on their return.
   
9.50 – 11.00

  • Skills:  Knots and shelter building, possible tool work for some – kinaesthetic focus
  • Team work and co-operation development, contributing ideas
  • Taking responsibility and challenges
  • Knots- shear lashing and remind about square lashing.
  • Free choice – make a large shelter such as a North American tepee or natural shelter as a group or make a mini shelter or continue to develop their games, instruments etc. from last week.
  • Tool box and contents if required and pupils require and is necessary
  • A-frame set up
  • String, scissors
  • Wool
 
Rolling break time – their choice when.
  • Break time – hand wash drink and snack
Full Flask, cups, drinking choc  
11.00 – 11.40

  • Environmental awareness and environmental protection – auditory and kinaesthetic focus
  • Assessing and taking acceptable risk
  • Reflective thinking, positive social interaction and supporting each other.
  • Fire circle – How do we behave in and around a fire – what would we need.  Sit in the fire circle area.  Play some games to ensure moving around a fire properly.
  • ‘Noses’ – 8 clues to an animals identity when they’ve guessed it put your finger on your nose, don’t shout out.  When all have fingers on their noses they can shout it out together.  Round two – walk around the fire circle when they’ve guessed.
  • Circle time – Name, animal, action – one good thing about me, and one good thing about someone else.
   

 

 

Forest Schools – Session 4

Pre-session (boundary markers up) 10 Indian commandments and quotes with totem and Native American art on the back (1 for each child to collect) around the boundaries

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required * Comments
9.30 – 9.50**

  • Organisational and co-operation skills
  • Site awareness and familiarity becoming embedded
  • Site arrival, equipment out, circle set up, risk assessment.
  • Name game – name, animal or Native American name and action.
  • Boundary game – go out themselves from base and collect one of the information cards/commandments.
10 Indian Commandments /quotes with Native American Art examples on the back.  
9.50 – 10.20

  • Links to curriculum based themes at school
  • Literacy development – story creation, development, story telling, communication, co-operation – auditory focus but introduce kinaesthetic and visual elements
  • Environmental awareness and understanding and care for their surroundings and each other.
  • Read out and show the quotes and look at the pictures and talk about what they represent and mean.  Explain how being in touch with nature was very important to the Native Americans.
  • Play Natures Web showing how everything is connected, look at what happens when anything is removed or damaged.
  • Tell a Native American story – pupils to join in, act out parts, think about the theme/moral/meaning of the story.
  • String/wool for natures web
  • Native American Story to tell.
 
10.20 – 11.15

  • Small achievable tasks, self selection onwards preferred learning styles
  • Skills:  Possible some tool work, knots practice, fire area creation and understanding
  • Free Choice – continue work on shelters, continue work on instruments, games, hunting post, make up a Native American Story to tell, create a totem pole.
  • Assist in creation of a fire pit in the fire area – make toasting sticks (keep them damp and clean)
  • Clay
  • String / Wool
  • Wood for pegs/toasting sticks
  • Charcoal
  • Tool box
 
Break time at some point during the above session
  • Break time – hand wash drink and snack
Full Flask, cups, drinking choc  
11.15 – 11.40

  • Skills:  making and managing fire.  Assessing and taking acceptable risk
  • Supporting each other to take responsibilities and co-operating together on a group activity
  • Reflective thinking for personal, social and emotional development
  • Explain what kind of materials you need for a fire and why – group to collect and gather materials
  • Return to the fire circle and look at the materials – practice moving around a fire circle
  • Circle time – name, animal, action – something that’s happened this morning and how it made me feel.
Fire Kit to show them contents  

 

 

Forest Schools – Session 5

Pre-session (boundary markers up)

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required * Comments
9.30 – 10.00**

  • Confidence in a different environment
  • Personal responses and emotional language development.
  • Site arrival, equipment out, circle set up, risk assessment.
  • Boundary – silent walk and sit in a special place for 5 minutes
  • Name, animal, action – my special place on site, why and how it makes me feel.
   
10.00 – 10.30

  • Different kinds and styles of communication within team work and cooperation – able to tailor to preferred learning styles
  • Skills: tool use for some.
  • How would you communicate between tribes?  In groups develop a code, signal, way of sending messages
  • Continue making toasting sticks
  • Tool box
  • Wood for toasting sticks
  • Paper/pencils
 
10.30 – 11.20

  • Taking and assessing acceptable risk
  • Skills:  Fire lighting and fire management, possibly cooking outdoors
  • Self selected opportunities – space and time to make decisions and choices
  • Break time:  All together and build the fire
  • Light the fire – if appropriate – toast marshmallows or bread or boil water in the Kelly kettle for drinks
  • Share the methods of communicating between groups, share any stories that have been invented.
  • Free to leave the fire area and go and continue any of their activities and play.  (Someone to collect additional fire materials for next week)
  • Re-join group to extinguish the fire and show how it is put out – send off a ‘thank you’ for something with the smoke. .
  • Drink/flask/ possibly Kelly Kettle
  • Bread dough
  • Marshmallows
  • Dry fire wood collected last week
  • Fire kit, water, watering can, fire blanket etc
 
11.20 – 11.40

  • Emotional development, reflective time.
Circle time – Name, animal and action – Collect part of the fire charcoal and spread to the winds with a good thought or wish.    

 

 

Forest Schools – Session 6

Pre-session (boundary markers up) – Special item for each person hung up around the boundary

Aims/Issues/Skills Activities Resources Required * Comments
9.30 – 9.50**

  • Language and communication development – speaking and listening
  • Site arrival, equipment out, circle set up, risk assessment.
  • Name, animal, action – If I was an animal I would be a….
  • Boundary walk – go out individually and collect their special item and bring back to the group.
Special items for end of experience  
9.50 – 10.30

  • Skills: Knots, tools for some, creation
  • Co-operation, communication and encouragement during free choice and play
  • Free choice – re-visit any of the previous week’s activities, things they’ve enjoyed or are unfinished, free play.  Collect additional fire materials.
All equipment as per previous weeks.  Rope, tarpaulins, clay, charcoal, pencils, pens, tool kit etc.  
10.30 – 10.50

  • Taking and assessing acceptable risk
  • Skills:  Fire lighting and fire management, possibly cooking outdoors – kinaesthetic focus
  • Positive social interaction, co-operation, inclusion and pariticpation.
  • Break time:  Possible fire if the group wants.  Light the fire – if appropriate – toast marshmallows or bread or boil water in the Kelly kettle for drinks
  • Extinguish fire together – with a wish or a thank you.
  • Drinks
  • Drink/flask/ possibly Kelly Kettle
  • Dry fire wood collected last week
  • Bread dough
  • Marshmallows
  • Fire kit, water, watering can, fire blanket etc
 
10.50 – 11.15

  • Celebration of successes and achievements, co-operation
  • Communication, speaking and listening – visual/auditory focus
Performances of stories, showing what has been created and made, playing any games we’ve really enjoyed again    
11.15 – 11.40

  • Self-confidence and esteem building.
Circle time – Name, animal, action – my best achievement during Forest Schools.    

 

 

Session review sheet:

 

Session Number:                                                   Session Date:

 

 

What went well:

 

 

 

 

What didn’t go so well:

 

 

 

 

Things to do differently/how:

 

 

 

 

Things to revisit:

 

 

 

 

Other comments/observations: Consider play, self-directed learning, self-esteem, emotional intelligence, behaviour, learning

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