Loretto secures Forest School status

Loretto Junior School has secured ‘Forest School’ status and is one of only a small number in Scotland

To be a Forest School is to change the way pupils connect to nature, adopting an innovative educational approach to outdoor play and learning.   

This is intended to develop pupils’ understanding of the world, the environment and everything within it through the use of emotions, imagination and senses. 

The philosophy of Loretto’s Forest School is to encourage and inspire their pupils through positive outdoor experiences. By participating in engaging, motivating and achievable tasks and activities in a woodland environment, every pupil has an opportunity to develop intrinsic motivation, sound emotional and social skills. 

Loretto’s programmes will run throughout the school week, going to the woods to use full-sized tools, play, learn boundaries of behaviour; both physical and social, establish and grow in confidence, self-esteem and become self-motivated. 

The Forest School aims to develop:

  • Self-awareness
  • Self-regulation
  • Intrinsic motivation
  • Empathy
  • Good social communication skills
  • Independence
  • A positive mental attitude, self-esteem and confidence

Activities are built upon progressively so that understanding and skills develop through practice. The school’s Forest School leaders are qualified through nationally recognised and accredited training, therefore ensuring Loretto’s Forest School is a high-quality learning experience. The earlier sessions will concentrate on safety, establishing boundaries and routines. As pupils develop in confidence and familiarity with the environment the sessions focus on the development and consolidation of skills and understanding. 

The Loretto Forest School site is located in the wooded area behind one of the boarding houses on the Senior School campus. 

Jonathan Hewat, Director of Communications at Loretto School, said: “Set in 85 acres of leafy campus, Loretto is perfectly situated to pioneer one of the most important educational developments in the world today. “ 


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