2nd Edition

Understanding the Danish Forest School Approach Early Years Education in Practice

By Jane Williams-Siegfredsen Copyright 2017
    120 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    120 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This fully revised edition of Understanding the Danish Forest School Approach is a much needed source of information for those wishing to extend and consolidate their understanding of the Danish Forest School Approach. It enables analysis of the essential elements of this particular approach to early childhood teaching and the relationship it holds with quality early years practice.

    Describing the key principles of the Forest School Approach to early childhood, and heavily supported with practical examples and case studies, each chapter ends with highlighted key points, followed by reflections on practice to aid discussion and reflection on own practice. Including a new chapter on the curriculum, this text explores all aspects of the approach including:

    • The geographical, historical, social and cultural influences that have shaped the philosophy and pedagogy of the early years setting in Denmark.
    • The people and theories that have influenced and supported the practices of using the outdoors with children.
    • An analysis of the learning environments, their risks and challenges and what a learning environment is made up of.
    • The Danish early years curriculum; the areas of learning and the way pedagogues facilitate the learning processes.
    • Parental, political and research perspectives on the approach and the sustainability of its future.

    Understanding the Danish Forest School Approach highlights the key ideas that practitioners should consider when reviewing and reflecting on their own practice, and outlines the national appraisals and evaluations of the curriculum. Providing students and practitioners with key information about a major pedagogical influence on early years practice, this is a vital text for students, early years and childcare practitioners, teachers, early years professionals, children’s centre professionals, lecturers, advisory teachers and setting managers.

    Introduction   1 The context   2 Theory and practice   3 The Danish pedagogue   4 The learning environment   5 The Danish early years curriculum  6 Organisation of Danish early years settings   7 The future of the Danish Forest School Approach   Glossary


    Jane Williams-Siegfredsen is Director and Consultant for Inside-Out Nature, based in Denmark.

    Mary Whalley, Leeds Metropolitan University, UK

    This is a valuable text for students at FE level (for instance on the Level 3 Diploma for the Children’s Workforce [Early Years Educator]) and those on under-graduate programmes considering aspects of pedagogy relating to early childhood/primary education – such as Foundation Degree Early Years, BA Childhood Studies and initial teacher education (EYTS and QTS – EYFS/KS1 and KS2?). It has wider appeal to parents and other professionals in providing good understanding of the Danish Forest School approach. Almost certainly, this book also has international appeal and relevance for students at an equivalent level. This book still has relevance and validity in contemporary discourse. I very much enjoyed reading this and learned a lot from it!

    Sue Elliott, University of New England, Australia

    The current edition provides an excellent introduction to Danish early childhood education and the principles and pedagogy of forest school. The publication is well organised, the key points and implications at the end of each chapter are useful guides. The text is concise and readable by a broad audience. The main audience is in-service and pre-service early childhood educators.

    Clair Stevens, Canterbury Christ Church University, UK

    This is an accessible book that would support teachers, practitioners and students’ knowledge and understanding of both the pedagogical approach to the Danish Forest School and consolidate child development theory and practice. The book is clearly structured and each chapter flows well; beginning by setting out the context, history and influences that have shaped the practice in Denmark.

    Clare Boucher, Greenwich Community College, UK

    I believe that there is a real need for this book because of the continuing popularity of the Forest School approach. Most Early Years settings now have a ‘Forest School’ type outdoor learning environment, due to the many benefits for the children. Yes I do recommend that you publish the Second Edition of this book, Jane Williams-Siegfredsen is obviously an expert in this field and provides invaluable insight into the forest school Danish Approach. An invaluable resource rich in content and supportive of CPD as well as Early Years students, supporting their learning of Forest Schools.