Interview: Coach Ben

“Coach’s Interview”, is our coverage series for the people who takes the various session of Forest School Singapore. Like a little Diary of the different Forest School we have in FSS. You will get to hear the stories, motivation and visions of our lovely Coaches. For this episode we have:

Coach Ben
Forest School Singapore (2018-Now)

1) My personal motivations and the actions taken to be involved with Forest School at the start.

Before becoming a coach at Forest School, I spent 6 years of my life dedicated to the Singapore military. My past self was entirely comfortable with the crafts of warfare, but was interestingly perturbated with the presence of children. This happens continuously and eventually made me attempt to reach in deep, looking for answers about my reluctance for connection with innocence and fun. Leaving the military back in 2016 was the beginning of a huge shift, my foundations crumbled and I was a pile of carbon, ready to transform into a diamond. Realising that for my life to change, I must change first, and it took some self-encouragement to ask about a programme I had been seeing my friend attending that involved kids, and that programme was Forest School.

2) The reconnection with my altruistic self, getting in tune with the Forest School synergy and frequency. 

I started out attending the adult training at Rifle Range Forest in November 2017, affectionately named Teacher “Eddy”. Then facilitator, now dear companion in the Forest School journey, coach Gin exposed us to a different and unique perspective towards nature and kids. By the end of the session, new point of views were made, distinctions were understood and I had my reality bubble expanded. That feeling led me down the road towards volunteering with Forest School, and every new session was a learning session. For a military man, I must say I learnt more about the jungles from the children than I could share with them. The eventual meet-up with the rest of the Forest School team was inevitable as constant commitment and showing up creates trust and rapport with individuals of different walks of life. What was incredible is that albeit the difference in goals and motivations, the Forest School team moves and pushes ahead in a general and collective direction, bringing the Forest School pedagogy to as many families that can benefit from it as possible. All Forest School practitioners, parents, kids, coaches and volunteers past and present, resonate at a common frequency with a ring of certainty, that our work brings forth the solid foundation upon which our kids can flourish and build from in their later years. Same greens, different contexts

3) The challenges of being a Forest School coach, and my commitment to the community.

More often than not, questions about why we do what we do surfaces. We have a relationship with the jungle that accommodates, protects, provides and accepts us. The same cannot be said of our human counterparts. The Forest School team constantly experiences the innate desire of humanity to be right, where we have both sides of the same society and populace constantly going back and forth with each other about our approach and methods. There is no joy about a supporting vote nor anguish for a disapproving voice; what we need is just the freedom to resonate and practise our pedagogy to benefit the ones that willingly believe in us and Forest School. Freedom of choice, expression and practice will go a long way for Singapore as a whole. One thing is for sure, I will personally continue to put Forest School methods to work in my individual pursuit for excellence and life purpose. I am once a Forest School coach, and will always be a Forest School coach.

%d bloggers like this: