Training as an Outdoor Learning Professional

Training as an Outdoor Learning Professional

Some of you might be thinking about the next step in your outdoor learning journey. Maybe you love helping out at your local Forest School or, like us, are passionate about the benefits Outdoor Learning can have for our children.

If so, you may have considered training to become an Outdoor Learning professional. This blog post written by our friend Sam Goddard who runs the brilliant Rooted Forest School and Cambium Sustainable will shed some light on the different types of training available and how the process works.

1) Why Train?

There are many different types of training available, both accredited and non-accredited. A non-accredited course will give you a good introduction to some of the ideas and activities but to really develop your outdoor teaching skills, you’ll need to look for an accredited training course. This means that there will be some coursework to complete and your tutor will mark your work at the end of the course and issue you with a certificate. Courses like this go into more detail and depth and usually last longer, depending on the level.

2) What types of training are available?

Most courses in this area are either Forest School or more general Outdoor Learning. Forest School is a unique, child-led approach to learning and needs to be practiced professionally to maintain the quality and ethos. Therefore, Forest School training tends to be longer and more in depth than other courses. Outdoor Learning courses give you an insight into a different more adult-led, curriculum linked approach and are usually shorter and less intensive. 

3) What do the different levels mean?

Generally speaking, the higher the level of an accredited course, the more work it will involve! A Level 1 course should be an introduction and usually won’t involve much self-directed learning on your part. However, a level 3 course is thought to be roughly equivalent to A-Level standard and will involve a lot of independent study and coursework. Make sure you do your research and find the course that suits your interests and the time you have available!

 Sam Goddard runs Rooted Forest School and Cambium Sustainable, delivering Forest School and Outdoor Learning sessions and training including CPD events for schools and nurseries. He also offers keynote talks for conferences and events focusing on the benefits and outcomes of Outdoor Learning.

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