Praise for Tree Warden’s Forest School
Erewash Tree Warden David Green’s day nursery has won an award for its Forest School.
David is owner and head of Alphabet House Day Nursery in Long Eaton, Derbyshire – where he is Tree Warden. His nursery scooped second prize of £500 and 10 native trees in the Royal Forestry Society Excellence in Forestry Schools Award 2011.
“We are delighted that the hard work, time and passion that all our staff put into our Forest Schools programme have achieved this level of recognition,” said David.
“By forging partnerships with local woodland owners Edmund and Kate Woodward we have been able to expose our children to the wonders of nature and allow them to make life-long connections with the natural world.”
Children are encouraged to take part in Forest School from the age of three or four, building shelters and enjoying imaginative and creative play. Storytelling and snacks around a forest fire are all on the timetable.
Judging the competition, Susannah Podmore, Forest Education Initiative co-ordinator for England, said: “The enthusiasm from the nursery, the woodland owners, parents, and assistants for this Forest School programme was overwhelming.
“With very little funding, it has been embedded into the whole nursery approach to child-led learning in a woodland setting.”
David is also working with the Woodwards to encourage more schools and groups to get involved under the Countryside Education Visits access scheme.
David Green is pictured above (kneeling, left) with two of his staff, Sir Jack Whitaker of the RFS, woodland owner Edmund Woodward and Forest School children.
Spotlight on Favourite Trees
Erewash, Havant and Reading Tree Warden networks are all involved with initiatives designed to record and raise the profile of the links between trees and local heritage.
Erewash Tree Wardens are on the look out for 60 Favourite Trees – in honour of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
Erewash Borough Council in Derbyshire has launched a special photographic competition to mark the occasion. The deadline for nominations is 31 December.
Judges will select the 60 favourite trees and also award cash prizes for the best photographs and reasons given for nominating a particular tree.
A celebratory exhibition of the entries is planned for display around the borough and on the council’s website next year.
The project follows the national celebration 10 years ago when The Tree Council called on Tree Wardens throughout the UK to help identify 50 special trees to mark the Queen’s Golden Jubilee.
• The competition is open to everyone of any age, whether they live, work or just visit Erewash. Application forms can be downloaded at www.erewash.gov.uk/pride.