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Episode 19: Risk-taking and Forest School with Mel McCree and Sarah Lawfull

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Episode 19 of the TTS Talking Early Years podcast continues the conversation about all things Forest School. Alistair Bryce-Clegg is joined again by renowned Forest School experts and advocates, Mel McCree and Sarah d Sarah Lawfull. 
 
Research and evidence show that the Forest School approach actively develops children’s risk awareness and confidence in managing their own risk-taking abilities. Although it is such an integral part of early years education, we know it can sometimes be a daunting approach to adopt.  
 
Sharing their knowledge and experience with us, Mel and Sarah discuss the role of the adult vs the child when adopting the Forest School approach and how Forest School promotes safe opportunities for children to take appropriate and managed risks.
 

The role of the adult vs the child:

The Forest School approach actively develops children’s risk awareness and confidence in managing their own risk-taking abilities. Sarah Lawfull explains that when managing risk-taking capabilities, it’s not about focusing heavily on the child’s age, but instead on their developmental readiness, confidence, and competence – as well as the practitioner’s own confidence and understanding.  
 
Sarah adds: “It’s about practitioners being mindful and observing what the children are doing or what they’re wanting to do. It’s then picking out those needs/wants and offering an appropriate tool or technique for the child that will develop and enhance their learning. 

Watch on YouTube:

(The views expressed throughout this podcast are the speakers’ own, and TTS does not take responsibility for the views and guidance highlighted as part of this recording).

(Please note: When referencing the speaker’s views, theory and work for the development of your own materials, please ensure the academic reference of the speaker is cited).

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Risk-taking and Forest School

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