Foundations in Forest School Course

Play-Based Child-Led Learning in Nature

Who is this course for?

This hands-on experiential course is targeted at parents/daycare providers/classroom teachers; anyone who wants to spend more time outdoors with the children in their care.

Course description

The complete course takes place in two parts, over two different weekends. After completing Part 1, you are welcome and encouraged to sign up for Part 2.  

This course will enable you to feel safe and confident while spending time outside, benefiting from nature. The course will combine theory and experiential learning to offer participants a deeper understanding of what Forest School is and how it can be implemented from the school-yard to a sprawling forest or the banks of the river, at a daycare with toddlers or in your own backyard with your children. Our experienced instructors will introduce and explain how they use Forest School methodology with the children in their care; including emergent child-led, experiential, inquiry-based, play-based and place-based learning approaches.

Part 1 will cover the basics of Forest School philosophy, risk/benefit assessments, child led learning, the benefits of play, and much more. 

In Part 2, the learning will be specifically about risky play and in addition, participants will have the opportunity to act as a facilitator and put into practice the skills that they learned in Part 1.  Upon completion of the entire course, participants will have the knowledge and tools to feel confident bringing children outside to learn and play.

Language of instruction: The course will be taught in English.

Classroom setting: The course will be delivered mainly outdoors, in a Forest School setting, though we will have easy access to indoor facilities for washrooms.

Course Tuition: $300/participant*

  • * Note that we are offering a student rate of $200 (full-time students)

Dates: Part 1: May 1-2, 2021-Postponed until August 21-22, 2021

Time: 8:30am-3:30pm


Payment: Email transfer to


Michelle Hegge

Michelle is currently the Teaching Director at Chelsea Forest School and has been with the school since 1995. She was instrumental in transforming the school from a traditional preschool to a Forest School that offers Forest School programs for preschoolers as well as school aged children. She is one of the first certified Forest School Practitioners (Level 3) in Canada.

When Michelle is not working for Chelsea Forest School she works for the Friends of Gatineau Park as a Nature Interpreter.

Michelle has a B.Ed (Junior-Intermediate, Science) and a BSc (honours) in Biology.