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Securing Our Future Working with Schools

Working with Schools

Working with local schools in the Forest of Dean, this project aimed to enthuse and inspire children and young adults to look at and explore their unique forest environment. We look to build a legacy of proud, active, interested Foresters who will work to protect and promote their heritage, benefiting from the accumulated learning resources gathered over the delivery period from a range of our projects.

What is the Working with Schools project?

This project aims to enthuse local teachers and children about their natural, built and cultural heritage, so that they become proud of their Forest heritage and will protect and promote it in future.

Lydbrook Primary School fully immersed themselves in the Foresters’ Forest programme by re-writing their school curriculum to embrace their local heritage. This is now being used as a model for other schools.

Head Teacher, Simon Lusted, says (February 2022):

"I would like to thank Sue Middleton on behalf of everyone at Lydbrook School for her most amazing and infectious energy, enthusiasm and support in driving the Working with Schools element of the Forester’s Forest Project forward and especially in recognising the need to educate the next generation for the future. It has been a privilege to work alongside Sue in delivering the school’s priorities on this and the staff, pupils and families of Lydbrook Primary School have gained so much over the years linking with and leading this important development. As I have said on numerous occasions, it was the “nugget” I was looking for, not only for the school but for our community also. I am excited that the work undertaken will never be lost and is committed into the long term aims of the school. The legacy is well established and strong. A huge thank you from all of us at Lydbrook School!"

Watch their film:

What has the project delivered?

Lydbrook Primary School aim to inspire other schools to follow on, using the FREE resources we list below. Lydbrook's experience demonstrates how well Foresters’ Forest projects can be integrated into local primary school work.

We hope sharing learning experiences will be an important part of the local schools' collaboration in future. Perhaps building on the success of  the Foresters' Forest 'Schools Days' held each year, where we invited local teachers and our projects to display and discuss the works completed.

Resources provided for schools:

  • Ranger in a Bag - developed with Forestry England, the bags enable teaching staff to take pupils out on activity based exploration and learning days in the Forest. There is an ‘Amazing Animals’ bag and a ‘Fantastic Forests’ bag,  both jam-packed with activities for schools to experience. The learning activities include tree and wildlife identification, bug collecting, wildlife identification and shelter building – along with plenty of easy-read fact sheets to refer to. To place a free booking to use the bags in your Forest of Dean school please email or call 0300 067 4397 
  • Archaeology Pack - designed to give Forest of Dean school teachers rich, visual and hands-on material, to use in teaching Key Stage 2 local history topics across the Forest of Dean, detailing all sites of interest within the Forest and their proximity to the schools. To receive a free pack for your Forest of Dean school please email
  • History Scheme of Works - school curriculum Years 1-6 Key Stage 1 & 2 guidance notes for teachers, detailing how to include the Forest's rich history in school teaching. Download the PDF version: History Scheme of Works (complete set)
  • Natural Heritage Scheme of Works - school curriculum Years 1-6 Key Stage 1 & 2 guidance notes for teachers, detailing how to include the Forest's rich natural heritage in school teaching. Download the PDF version: Natural Heritage Scheme of Works (complete set)
  • Colouring Page  - we tell our story through this illustration, free to download: Foresters' Forest Colouring Page
  • Forest Literature - Reading the Forest is working with schools to develop free-to-use resources and lesson plans exploring where we live through our stories, authors and history. See Reading the Forest Teacher Resources
  • Timelines - see our two online ‘Timeline’ tools: the Foresters' Forest 'Forest Timeline', telling the story of the Forest through the ages, and Reading the Forest's 'Forest Literature Timeline'
  • Hidden Heritage Apps - the three Apps are an exciting way to explore the Forest of Dean using your mobile phone or tablet device, learning about historic sites as you go. To download see Hidden Heritage Apps
  • Geoheritage of the Dean App - through 11 walk routes this app explores the geology, coal and iron mining heritage of the Forest of Dean.  Introducing us to the rocks beneath the Forest and exploring ‘deep time’ – learning how the rocks of the Forest formed over 500 million years of Earth history.  You can even walk with and take photos of dinosaurs during the 'Deep Time Walk'! To download see Geology of Our Forest
  • Children's Books - by local author Andy Seed, 'The Story of the Forest' available to purchase from Forest of Dean Local History Society; and from late March 2022, the sequel 'The Wildlife of the Forest', available from Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust.

Click here to go to Lydbrook School's page about their involvement in the Foresters' Forest programme. 

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