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Learning in Alice Holt Forest and South England District

What the Forestry Commission offers at Alice Holt Forest and in the Forestry Commission's South District


The South England learning teamoffers a wide range of educational activities for schools and other groups at Alice Holt Forest throughout the year. We also provide resources and ideas for self-guided visits. Our programmes enable pupils to explore the nation's forests and to understand how they are managed to provide recreation, diverse habitats and economic benefit.

There are lively, hands-on activities for all ages which include minibeast hunts, sensory activities, orienteering and shelter building. We also offer study programmes for GCSE and post-16 courses and training in outdoor learning for education professionals. 

Whether you choose to lead your own visit using our resources (see left hand menu) or take part in a guided visit programme it would really help us to have your opinions. You can let us know how about your visit by completing this online feedback form.

The learning team is proud to have been awarded the Learning Outside the Classroom Quality Badge in 2010 and plans to apply, along with other districts, for a national accreditation of Forestry Commission learning opportunities.

Guided visits

We plan our education programmes to meet teachers' specified learning objectives. We assess student progress throughout the visit, adapting delivery and content to suit the audience.

Details of the educational programmes available are organised by age group:

For further information please get in touch using the contact information opposite.  

Self-guided visits

Self-guided educational visits are a great alternative to our guided programmes and there's also the option to run a self-guided afternoon after a guided morning session. If you are planning a self-guided visit please get in touch beforehand so we can help you get the most out of your visit, give you the opportunity to benefit from reduced coach parking charges and make you aware of any other activities in the forest which may affect your visit.

We are steadily adding to our suite of downloadablke learning resources to help you get the most from your own visits. To find them please click on Resources in the left hand menu. There's also a link there to more resources on our FC England national learning pages.

Learning feedback
Monitoring and evaluation is important to help us maintain our high standards and to meet both our own objectives and those of the groups with whom we work.

We evaluate our own performance after each visit and we value feedback from teachers and group leaders. We have two primary channels for providing feedback, our online survey and local site questionnaires for primary and secondary school visits. Teachers and group leaders are invited to discuss all aspects of their visit, including assessment and evaluation before they bring their groups.

Sky Rainforest Trail

The Sky Rainforest Trail is a new trail at Alice Holt Forest which looks at the problems facing the Amazon Rainforest and compares it with the sustainably managed forests in this country. We have produced detailed primary and secondary school resources for teachers to help them make effective use of the Rainforest Discovery Trail to support curriculum-based work. They include practical activities, questions and information. To be emailed a copy of these resources please contact Kathleen Gradidge or Helen Wallace.

Other locations

If you are interested in learning opportunities in other forests in the district (Hampshire, Surrey, West Sussex, Dorset, Wiltshire and Isle of Wight), please email: learning.south@forestry.gsi.gov.uk.

Please note that guided visits are currently only available at Alice Holt Forest, Moors Valley Country Park and Forest, Queen Elizabeth Country Park and in the New Forest (please contact the New Forest National Park for these). 

If you would like to make use of a site over a period of time to run your own programme of activities e.g. Forest School, you will normally need a permit to do so. Please contact us to discuss your plans.

Parking at Alice Holt Forest

Parking is free of charge for visits led by Alice Holt staff but parking charges apply to self-guided educational visits. If you book in advance you will be charged at reduced rates.

Partnership opportunities

We are always keen to work with educational partners to offer learning opportunities to a wider audience at Alice Holt Forest and other Forestry Commission woodlands. If you are an environmental education business or organisation, including volunteer organisations, wishing to expand your educational work and operate from new sites we would like to hear from you.

Teachers, early years professionals and student teachers

Do you want to do more outdoor teaching and make better use of your school grounds but don’t know where to start? We can help.

The Alice Holt education team runs CPD for teachers, school support staff and early years practitioners and training days for student teachers. We run courses for early years practitioners and primary school staff which include hands on experience of a range of activities with cross-curricular application, discussion of the benefits of outdoor learning and a look at risk assessment. For secondary schools we offer training for geography fieldwork and aspects of citizenship, particularly appropriate for NQTs and non-specialist teachers. We can provide a course especially for your school or setting staff (or for staff from a group of schools or settings)  at Alice Holt Forest or a Forestry Commission woodland near you. 

Alternative educational setting placements are also available to student teachers. For more information and booking please ring 01420 23666 or email Helen Wallace.

For further information on CPD and on student teacher placements see: continuing professional development and training for student teachers .

Location

OS Grid ref: SU811417
Postcode: GU10 4LS

Get directions

Contact

Recreation Officer
01483 326266
kathleen.gradidge@­forestry.gsi.gov.uk

What's of interest

 Climate Week (3rd - 9th March) 

Look out for our Climate Week Trail on the Habitat Trail at Alice Holt during this week. It's ideal for family groups and schools to follow. There are hands on activities, information and questions along the way.

There'll also be Climate Week information on the car park boards and at the cafe.

Great News! Free conference for teachers on 20th March 9.15am-4pm - Discover the living curriculum on your doorstep! 

The Our South Downs partnership (South Downs National Park and Learning through Landscapes) is running its Outdoor Education Conference at the University of Sussex.
Be inspired by speakers David Bond (Project Wild Thing), Rob Lucas (Field Studies Council) and Charles Davies (Head of Moulscomb Primary School). Take part in a range of experiential workshops covering National Curriculum subjects. Visit the 'market place' of outdoor education providers, including the Forestry Commission, who offer a variety of outdoor learning opportunities for schools.

Book online at www.ltl.org.uk. For more information ring 01962 845811 or email enquiries@ltl.org.uk

 

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