Project dates: 2019-2022
Funder: Department for Education, with support from the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and Natural England
Nature Friendly Schools is an exciting, £6.4m Government-funded project to improve mental wellbeing of children by taking the classroom outdoors. Over the course of four years, it will bring thousands of children, of all ages and backgrounds, closer to nature.
Research shows that 1 in 10 children do not regularly spend time outdoors. However, activities in nature have been shown to positively impact pupils’ mental health, wellbeing and their engagement with school. As part of the project, the National Centre for Social Research will work with us to understand why nature has this effect. Nature Friendly Schools is the largest ever research project of its type, and it has the potential to shape the way we view education as a nation.
You can also:
- Find out if your school or API is eligible
- Follow FSC Nature Friendly Schools on Twitter for the latest from the project
The project will train, mentor and support teachers to deliver effective outdoor education, with the aim to:
● Develop care and concern for the environment in children
● Improve children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing
● Increase attendance and improve pupil engagement with school
Over the four years of the project, participating schools and Alternative Provision institutions (APIs) will have the opportunity to take part in overnight residential visits at FSC Field Centres and day visits at locations across the country.
On these visits, experienced FSC staff will mentor and support teachers to develop their confidence in outdoors teaching, while providing a safe and exciting outdoor environment to work in.
FSC will support the learning process with a range of online resources, webinars and Identification Charts, which will be available to all participating schools and teachers. By the end of the project, teachers will have the tools to apply their knowledge of outdoor teaching to a wide variety of environments.
Interested in finding out if your school or API is eligible for this exciting funded project? Register your interest at the Nature Friendly Schools website
Nature Friendly Schools is funded by the Department for Education, with support from the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and Natural England. It is led by The Wildlife Trust in partnership with Young Minds, Groundwork, Sensory Trust and the Field Studies Council.