It's officially been just over a year since Forest Schooled went public. Before that, it was just my private thoughts and musings sometimes shared with family and friends. But then some of them told me I should share them more widely... and so I did! And here we are a year later and I'm still learning all the time, getting forest schooled (in terms of getting educated as well as feeling like I'm getting my butt kicked a little bit) from my experiences in the woods... and sometimes out of the woods too. I'm also still enjoying writing about it! So on a briefly sappy note, I do want to say thanks for humouring me. Thanks for listening, for engaging in discussion and, most gratefully, providing a safe and supportive space for me to write down and share all these thoughts and stories.
So here's where I share some news about how my journey is evolving... I've moved! And not just to a different town. I've moved countries. After living in the UK for several years, where I was introduced to Forest School in the first place and also underwent the level 3 training, I have moved to the east coast of the big and bold USA.
So what does this mean for me and Forest School? Well, I'm not quite sure yet! That's what I'm figuring out. What I do know is that the training I did to become a Forest School Leader changed a lot about the way I approach working with kids (and adults) in the outdoors. It changed how I view learning, how I understand and 'manage' behaviour, and how I build relationships with those that I work with. To paraphrase, I carry a lot of the Forest School ethos with me wherever I go, even if where I am is "Not really Forest School."
My point is the journey has not ended because I've moved to the States, it's merely evolving. And I plan to keep writing about my experiences as I have done over the past year as I continue to work with young people in the outdoors in my Forest-School-inspired way (starting with a summer camp I'll be working at beginning next week!). My hope is to find a way to do Forest School, "The Real Deal", again very soon in the States... So if you've enjoyed coming along (or reading along, rather) on this journey with me so far, I hope you will continue to do so as the next phase of Forest Schooled evolves!
Stay tuned and let's stay out in the woods... the fire's not out, it's just getting started!
With love from New England (never to replace Old England ❤️),
P.S. Obviously with evolution comes change, including changes to language as one moves from one place to another... So please forgive me if I trade in some s's for z's and also lose some u's in words like favourite and colour - I recognise (recognize?!) my spelling is bound to change and it is only a matter of time. I apologise/ze in advance for any confusion...