Okay, you know that feeling when you have an idea and then someday that idea becomes a reality? It's an amazing feeling and one I am so happy to share with you now!
Three and a half years ago I started writing Forest Schooled. It was purely a space for me to share stories and realisations as I learned about Forest School. Before that I actually really disliked writing and struggled putting my thoughts down on paper (or onto computer... #modernworld).
Somehow that dislike changed as I found writing things down a helpful way to organise my thoughts and also hold onto some pretty great memories I was making! I didn’t want to lose those stories and reflections as time passed. But I definitely didn’t anticipate then that someday I’d make a book out of it...
And now it is officially published and available on Amazon! It has been a project of the heart in which I wanted to create something meaningful and beautiful, including full colour photos I’ve been lovingly taking over the years, with photography being another passion of mine in addition to (apparently) writing...
I have rejoiced, cried, and stressed out while making this project come to life. It was a journey in and of itself to create a book about "my Forest School journey." But hey, it wouldn't be Forest School if it didn't challenge, stretch, and transform us, right? After all that's the point of getting Forest Schooled... So I hope others will truly enjoy having these stories in print, to read, reflect, and continue to inspire each other to do this work. THANK YOU to all of you for your support in getting here.
So if you’d like to hold your own personal copy of many of the stories shared on the Forest Schooled blog along with new insights and sentiments (including a lovely forward written by Jon Cree - thanks so much Jon!), all carefully organised and bundled up with love please follow the link. If you think a loved one or friend might want one too, please feel free to share this link with them. And if you need something to whet your appetite (or light your fire? Is that more Forest School-y?) check out the book description below.
Forest Schooled first began as an online blog where Caylin reflected on her greatest lessons and challenges while learning about and delivering Forest School programmes. She hoped sharing these stories would help give an “on the ground” and “in the real world” perspective of what it can look and feel like at a Forest School, where theories are put into practice and mud is found on boots (and sometimes on face and in hair). Forest Schooled, The Book is a bundled up collection of those stories documenting Caylin’s journey so far as she’s lived and worked with the Forest School ethos in three countries (England, the United States, and Canada) and with a variety of age groups and settings (urban city parks, rural forests, public schools, after care programmes, and more). Delivering Forest School in our modern world can be challenging. The hope for this book is to encourage you to pursue the challenge, find ease in making mistakes, reflect on learning, and appreciate the humour that comes with the messy, sometimes uncomfortable, but oh so deeply meaningful nature that is Forest School.
“I would definitely say that this set of stories is so meaningful that you cannot help but walk and live through these experiences. It is hard not to be touched by these tales, documented by Caylin from when she started her Forest School path, on training to become a level 3 practitioner, to well into her Forest School years. I would hasten to say of all the blogs about Forest School this is the one to read, as it gets to the nub of what it means to be a reflective practitioner.”
- Jon Cree, Founding Chair of the Forest School Association