Growing demand for ‘forest’ nurseries – where kids spend all day outside whatever the weather

One London 'forest' nursery has 2,100 kids on its waiting list - but would you want your child to go to one?

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What’s the set up at your local nursery? We’re guessing there are tables for arts and crafts, pretend play and perhaps a little outdoor space for warmer weather (or colder weather as long as the kids are well wrapped up).

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Well, now a professor has called for more research to be done on what are called ‘forest’ schools and nurseries – where children spend ALL day everyday outside, come rain, shine or snow.

The practice has come from Scandinavia and has at its heart the idea that teaching should be done outdoors.

The mum of a child who goes to a forest nursery in Barnes, West London, told the BBC:

“It took about two weeks for him to settle in before I had a completely different child.

“It’s like a light got switched on. I feel more confident in the character he’s developing in this environment than I ever did in an indoor nursery.”

While Professor Pasco Fearon of University College London reckons a bit of fresh air does no harm at all to kids, he has said: 

“We need rigorous research to test whether it really works. In general we need a more evidence-based approach to education.”

Hmmm. This is an interesting one. One of our mums on the team agreed that while the great outdoors is definitely good for children, her little girl quite likes the cosiness of the indoors, too, especially during winter months (don’t we all?!)

What do you think?

Do you think it would be good for your little one to spend all day everyday outside? Or do think a mix of indoor and outdoor play is better?

Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook

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