Forest School Level 3 Training FAQs

Click on the questions below to see the answers!


What is Forest School?

Forest school is, quite simply, AMAZING! It's a learner-led ethos using the woodland environment to inspire and encourage great things. And we love it! The clever people at the Forest School Association came up with a good definition: ‘an inspirational process, that offers ALL learners regular opportunities to achieve, develop confidence and self-esteem, through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees.’

There are so many trainers out there, why should I train with Go Wild?

If you want a personal approach to training then I'm a great choice! I have been teaching forest school sessions for almost a decade and have a wealth of experience with all ages and abilities. I run a very a small company and we pride ourselves on our personal approach.

Whether it's a simple question you ask to our closed Facebook Group of trainees, an email to me asking for advice, or access to secret Go Wild events to develop your skills, I am there for you every step of the way.

I am a Forest School Association Endorsed Trainer, which means that my training has been scrutinised by the forest school professional body and it has been deemed to pass the very high standards set by the Association.

If you want to know what our trainees think of me, have a look at the testimonials at the bottom of the training page. And then of course, there's my 2017 Woodlands Best Course award.

I haven't done a Level 1 or Level 2 forest school qualification, do I have to?

The good news is no you don't! You can go straight to level 3 so long as you meet the general entry requirements (see below).

Are there any entry requirements?

Whichever level 3 course you sign up to, whether it's with us or someone else, you will need to:

  • Be 21 years old or over.
  • Have access to a group (not necessarily a school) that you can plan and run 6 Forest School sessions with.
  • Be committed to furthering your own learning with up to 120 hours of study.

You don't have to have a DBS check or first aid qualification to start the course but you will need to have both of these in place by the time you qualify in order to get your certificate.

When does training take place and how much does it cost?

I run at least three courses a year during school holidays: one at Easter, one in the first week of the summer holidays and one during October half term. Have a look at the start of this page for exact dates.

Training costs £900.

Aren't your courses in the middle of nowhere?

No! My base for training is the Wye Valley Sculpture Garden in Tintern. This is just 40 minutes from Bristol, Gloucester, Bath and Cardiff with good access to the M4, M5 and M50.

Many of my trainees share lifts to the course and others choose to camp or find a place to stay in the area. I think there's a bit of magic in the trees around here, it's a beautiful part of the British Isles and my trainees find it an inspiring place to train. So much so that they come back time and again (and I often meet them for a catch-up in the pub!).

Who will be training me?

Me! (Jackie)

I am a lively and enthusiastic individual, who uses her obvious passion for learning in the outdoors to engage and inspire both children, adults and the occasional dog. On paper, I am a qualified teacher, forest school leader and trainer, an outdoor first-aider, a skilled environmental educator and have a PGDip in Education. I have worked for many of Bristol's green institutions including the Avon Gorge and Downs Wildlife Project, Bristol Zoo and the Wild Place Project.

When I'm not forest schooling, I can be found in the Wye Valley, generally getting muddy and enjoying the countryside.

How long does the training take?

You will have a total of 9 days of face-to-face tuition in the woods, an observation of your delivering a forest school session and a year of supported self-study. You will have a year to complete your qualification.

Will the course be just focused on teaching school children?

No! As well as running my forest school sessions in mainstream schools I specialise in teaching other groups including teenagers at risk of exclusion, children with Special Educational Needs such as speach and language delay, hearing impaired, ADHD, Autism, adults recovering from alcohol misuse and many more. I pass on as much of my knowledge and experience to you as I can and I'm always on-hand to offer advice about your own groups.

Is assessment based on a written work, practical skills or observation?

You will have to proivde a portfolio of evidence to show that you understand what you have learned on the course and that you're putting it into practice. Usually this is in the form of essay-style writing but I encourage my trainees to use as many innovative methods, such as videos, if that makes it more interesting or accessible for you (and us!).

I also come along to a forest school session that you run so that I can see you in action. That's how I know you've really got it and I can always offer advice and guidance once I've seen you in the field (or woods!).

How do I submit my portfolio?

I use Dropbox for submission of work. This is an efficient, secure and environnmentally-friendly way of submitting you work and you can see feedback immediately. It also stops Inka, the forest school dog, from getting her grubby paws (and teeth) on all your hard work. If you're not familiar with Dropbox, don't worry! I cover everything you need to know during your training.