Forest School Awards
The outreach programme for Learning Without Walls

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Hazelwood Integrated Primary School

Council area: Belfast City Council
Forest School contact: Jim McDaid
Main Forest School contact email address: jim_mcdaid@hotmail.com
School website address: www.hazelwoodips.co.uk
Year of Forest School accreditation: 2012
Volunteers wanted: Please contact Jim McDaid if you want to volunteer at the Hazelwood Integrated Primary School Forest School

Smiles Background: Hazelwood Integrated Primary School is the birth place of NIFSA. Brian Poots, founder of NIFSA spent a year developing the Forest School Project in 2007. It was such a success this led to the formal setting up of NIFSA in 2008. The school has continued to embed Forest School activities in every part of the school day. Now every class visits the wood and children get to explore and stay healthy. Hazelwood Integrated Primary School has demonstrated Forest School sessions to other schools and groups and has hosted regular teacher training Forest School sessions. We regularly work with NIFSA to develop new initiatives and want to see Forest Schools in every school in Northern Ireland.

Forest Forest School setting: The Throne Wood adjacent to our school is an excellent learning resource which enhances the learning experiences of our pupils. This outdoor classroom provides opportunities for children of all ages to engage in active learning contexts across the curriculum. The Forest School ethos is now firmly embedded into everyday life in the school. As many as 200 pupils explore the woodland each week, identifying trees and flowers, learning about animal habitats, building dens and creating natural art. There is a Forest Club which is currently aiming for the Forest Ranger Award through NIFSA (Northern Ireland Forest School Association).

Read an evaluation of the NIFSA Forest School Programme for Hazelwood Integrated Primary School


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