OBS Season 1: Kidd the Wizard

The attachment to Forest School Singapore started off as a chance to get back out into the outdoors and it turned into an eye-opening experience for me in the end. 

I came into the attachment not expecting anything much from the 6 weeks, thinking that it would just be any other day program that I had done before bringing children out to have some fun in the outdoors. 

However, nature has its own ways of teaching the children without the need for us to step in at any point. In these short 6 weeks, I understand the power of play and how giving the children a sense of ownership with the touch to nature at a young age could impact them on such a different level.

I recall conducting my first FSS holiday camp, the simplicity of the program made it so different from what I have been doing in OBS. Participants took charge of what they want to do, where they want to head to and the coaches are just there to ensure their safety. If they want to play in the drain, go ahead. Even if they want to just stay in an area for the whole 3 hours, go ahead too. Just playing in the river for 2 hours drew out different emotions from participants and how they could have treated small details of life differently in the future.

Understanding the concept of forest school allowed me to also view the beauty of having a course that has no objective included and how in turn learning can still be achieved at the end of the session. 

Coming in from an organization that has a huge safety culture. I was initially concerned by certain activities that the children did, such as climbing the tree or sliding down the river but knowing that if I were to stop them from doing it I would be depriving them of play and important life lessons of ownership. So what I did was to step back but still engage myself in watching their safety in other forms. 

Overall I would say that forest school made me a realized a few things, 

  1. The importance of play at a young age
  2. How giving children ownership at a young age could shape them differently, being outspoken, taking more initiative etc.
  3. Running a course without any objective may not be a bad thing
  4. Taking a step back and look at managing safety differently

Written by: Kidd (2021)
OBS Season 1 Attache

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