On behalf of the Upper Wharfedale Primary Federation, the Friends of Kettlewell Primary School have submitted a bid to the Aviva Community Fund for a £5,000 grant to build an outdoor classroom for Forest School activities.
In the heart of Upper Wharfedale, Kettlewell Primary School already benefits from an enclosed pond area, willow tunnels and a private woodland at the end of the playing field. Back in 2000, the National Trust donated carved animal benches to help create a rudimentary learning glade but 15 years of Yorkshire weather has taken its toll.
The school has achieved its bronze award as a Woodland Trust Eco School and one of the teachers has also undergone the initial Forest School training to lead activities for pupils at Kettlewell Primary School as well as the other Federation schools of Burnsall, Cracoe and Rylstone and Grassington.
Should the bid be successful, the new classroom would allow the Federation to take their Forest School to the next level and enable more in-depth activities, investigations and experiments, about the natural world, to be available to schools and community groups, both locally and further afield.
At a time when small rural schools are under intense pressure to underpin their sustainability, assets such as the Forest School highlight their unique benefits that enhance learning, build confidence and develop social skills.
Kettlewell’s Forest Classroom bid has got off to a flying start but still needs as many votes as possible to be in with a chance. Anyone over 18, with an email address, is entitled to cast up to 10 votes by following the simply steps from this link:
https://www.avivacommunityfund.co.uk/voting/project/view/17-3147. Voting closes at midday on 21st November.