Forest School & Alternative Curriculum

March Wood Project runs therapeutic and educational programmes within 100 acres of woodland near Ashford.  A range of programmes are delivered covering topics such as woodland management, conservation and outdoor activities. Students can learn a range of skills in each of these subject areas that can lead to AQA Unit Awards.  Unit Awards are certificates of achievement that are achieved by evidencing a range of practical skills.

Why choose March Wood?

  • We provide a therapeutic learning environment for pupils of all levels and abilities
  • We provide a safe space where pupils can learn a range of practical and social skills
  • We help pupils build on their confidence, self-esteem, relationships and life skills
  • We help pupils learn skills that are transferable into further education, training or employment

What can students learn?

The project will work with pupils across a range of AQA Unit Awards including:

  • Environmental Studies
  • Outdoor Education
  • Woodland Management and Conservation
  • Environmental Art
  • Horticulture

Within the above categories pupils will be able to achieve awards in a wide range of areas. There are hundreds to choose from. All the units can be adapted to make learning flexible and inclusive.  Some of the units will cover:

  • Introduction to Bush Craft
  • Woodland Craft Skills – using tools such as saw and billhook
  • Habitat Conservation
  • Introduction to Fishing
  • Identifying Plants and Fungus
  • Woodland Management – coppicing
  • Introduction to Fire Lighting Skills
  • Working with Clay
  • Introduction to Archery
  • Map reading
  • Camp Fire Cooking
  • Natural Art in woodlands
  • Setting up an allotment

There will be time for group reflection at the end of each day, so students can learn from what went well and not so well. Set goals and action plans for the ongoing programmes, but also personal goals and aspirations

Referrals:

We require as much information as possible when referring so that we are aware of your aims and desired outcomes for your students.  Our referral forms ask for information such as attendance, behaviours, triggers to behaviours, relationships with others and if they have any special needs.  Our role is to work with young people to help address issues around confidence, self-esteem, negative behaviours and risk taking so they are better placed to engage positively with their education and their community.  Having as much information as possible enables us to map progress in certain areas and adapt how we work for the benefit of the students.

Sessions are very much led by the students. Our approach to working is such that we want students to be able to take ownership over their learning both practical and personal. We allow students the freedom to discuss, plan, risk assess and manage their sessions with us as much as possible. We feel that this approach brings out the best in the students that we work with allowing them to discover their own strengths and skills, allows them to develop positive relationships with other students as well as staff and to help them discover a sense of self.

We offer group sessions or one to one mentoring.

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