Holiday Activity Days
Frequently Asked Questions
Where and when?
What time do Holiday Activity days start and end?
Forest School Activity Days begin at 08:30. If you are running late, please call our office on 023 9247 9762 as soon as you can so that we can inform the Forest School team of your whereabouts. Your child will finish just before 15:30 and will be ready to collect at this time.
Where should I come to when I drop my child off?
If your child is attending Forest School at Stansted Park, you will need to drop them off in the car park to the Stansted House Offices, PO9 6DX (not the turn-off for the Garden Centre car park). Once you have turned off at the sign for Stansted House Offices, follow the road up and to the right where you will see several connected car parks. The drop off point is signposted; the Forest School team will meet you at 08:30 in the car park. After dropping off your child, they will be transported to the Forest School site.
If your child is attending Forest School at Slindon Woods, you will need to drop them off under the flag pole at the entrance to the primary school on Mead Sway Rd. The Forest School woods are situated next to Slindon Primary School, BN18 0QU. Please note that another Forest School operates in the area, be careful to check your name against our list when dropping your child off.
What happens in bad weather?
Our intention is for children and young people to experience the woodland through all seasons. We have shelters in our woodland sites, that offer a dry area for the children to shelter during wet weather. However, please be aware that due to the nature and environment of Forest School and Beach Explorers, there may be occasions where the weather makes it unsafe to be in the forest or at the beach. The weather forecast is checked regularly and a decision will be made the afternoon before (based on an up-to-date forecast); parents/carers will then be contacted. If an activity day is cancelled all bookings will be given the opportunity to transfer their booking to another day.
How much does it cost to send my child to a Holiday Activity Day?
Forest School Activity Days cost £30 per child per day (inclusive of VAT). Parents can book and pay with a credit or debit card (or via paypal) using our online booking system, or can pay over the telephone using card details. We regret that we cannot accept cheques as payment.
Can I pay with childcare vouchers?
Unfortunately we do not accept child care vouchers. Places must be booked online and paid for via credit or debit card. You can book online via our website.
Who can attend?
How old does my child need to be to go to Forest School?
The minimum age for a child to attend Forest School is 4, and the maximum is 11. At Forest School, we encourage independence and whilst there are staff to supervise the children, we expect your child to be able to take themselves to the toilet and eat their lunch without assistance. Children of many different ages attend Forest School Holiday Activity days, and there will usually be plenty of children of a similar age for your child to play with.
What if my child has special needs?
Forest School is part of Releasing Potential, an independent school and educational charity supporting children with special educational needs. Our Forest School leaders have expertise in working with children with special educational needs such as autism, but we ask that parents do mention any additional needs that their child has before booking. If you would like to discuss your child’s suitability for a Forest School Holiday Activity Day, please call our head office and speak with Karen Thakore on 023 9247 9762.
Is Forest Explorers suitable for disabled children?
Forest School leaders will always do their best to accommodate children with physical disabilities, but, unavaiodably, access to the forest can be difficult. If your child has a physical disability, please contact us before booking to discuss whether we can make it possible for them to attend. To discuss your requirements call Karen Thakore at our head office on 023 9247 9762.
Who will be on hand to supervise my child?
There will be a number of Releasing Potential staff running the days – all with skills, knowledge and energy to help the children engage and enjoy their day. Each session will include one Forest School Leader and a team of support staff. All our staff are DBS checked and trained to work with children in the outdoors.
What to bring
What should my child bring?
Your child will need to bring a packed lunch, ideally including a few snacks as well as a sandwich or other ‘main’ lunch item and plenty of water (or other drink). They will also need appropriate footwear (Wellington boots are ideal) and full waterproofs in case of rain.
Can you cater for food allergies?
Yes. Please pack your child’s lunch accordingly. We provide the opportunity to cook on an open fire, so do let us know if your child has any food intolerences. We may ask you to provide specific foods, such as hot chocolate, if your child cannot consume the standard variety.
What sort of clothing should my child wear?
In true Forest School style the days will run in most weathers, with the exception of very high winds or deep snow. Your child will need to be dressed in warm clothes with full waterproofs and welly boots. Please make sure they have trousers and long sleeved tops on to protect them from getting scratched. Also, warm socks are advised for winter dates, and a sun hat in sunny or hot weather.
At the forest
What activities will my child take part in?
Forest School and Beach Explorer Activity Days will consist of a variety of activities – from fire lighting to bug hunting, from tree climbing to shelter building. Children will be given the opportunity to make things from clay or wood, shells and stones, and they will use tools like bow saws, palm drills and woodcraft knives to do this. We will all have lunch together around the camp fire – please make sure your child has a hearty packed lunch – we’ll also enjoy hot chocolate and toasted marshmallows.
Do the days differ/vary?
Yes. Forest School and Beach Explorers Activity Days involve a range of activities that are changed daily. This means that if you decide to send your child for more than one day, or even a whole week, there will be plenty to do with little repetition.
Are there toilet facilities in the forest?
Yes. Both Forest School sites have self-composting toilets. While these are a bit rustic, they are toilet cubicles with doors and hand washing facilities.