Green fields highlighted by sunrays through heavy clouds from Curbar Edge

Outdoor Learning CPD (Teacher Training)

In recent years, as increasing demand for our popular programme of school visits has outstripped our capacity for delivery, we have been exploring extra ways to support our local schools to take their children out of the classroom, to spend more time learning in their school grounds and local green spaces.

Therefore, we are excited to announce an exciting new programme of monthly “Outdoor Learning at KS1/KS2” CPD sessions at our Macclesfield Forest centre, from March – July 2022.

These stand-alone sessions aim to:

  • Increase participant’s own topic knowledge and understanding
  • Share hints and tips on planning and running outdoor learning sessions (developing skills in outdoor leadership: from useful equipment to carry, to group management techniques)
  • Provide opportunities to participate in hands-on practical activities which could easily be duplicated in your own setting or local green space
  • Provide opportunities to network with other like-minded local teaching staff

We also offer customised CPD in your school setting. Please contact us for more information and to discuss your requirements.


Fri 25 March – Rivers & water cycle
Fri 29 April – Maps & map skills
Fri 27 May – Habitats (including classification and adaptations)
Fri 17 June – Plants

The 4 sessions are designed to complement each other, but each will be run as a stand-alone session, allowing teachers to choose the most relevant session(s) for their own needs.

Aimed at: Teaching Staff working with KS1 and KS2; but we also welcome School Leaders, Teaching staff from other year groups (e.g. EYFS) and any Outdoor Practitioner who wishes to expand and develop their own Outdoor Learning skillset.

Timing: All sessions will run from 10:00am – 3:00pm (welcome and refreshments from 9:30am)

Macclesfield Forest Classroom
Nearest postcode: SK11 0NS
What3Words reference: coach.emeralds.format
Directions to the Forest Classroom (852KB)

Cost: £50 per person, per session (Schools should be able to use Sports Premium funding for this)

To book your place, go to our booking portal at Ranger Events (

If you require further information before making your booking, please email

Additional Information

  • Refreshments will be provided, but please bring your own lunch.
  • Clothing: These sessions will include lots of practical activities, most of which will take place outdoors. Please wear/bring comfortable outdoor clothing, suitable for the weather on the day. For the ‘Rivers’ session, it is advisable to bring wellingtons if you have them.
  • Numbers: To enable all participants to be fully involved in the training activities, participant numbers will be limited to 16 per session. If your preferred session is fully booked, please email us stating which session you wished to attend. If there is enough demand we will aim to provide additional dates.
  • Your trainer for these sessions will be Frances, our Learning & Discovery Ranger based at Macclesfield Forest. Frances has been leading school visits with our team since 2002 and has a wealth of experience and expertise to share.

What do Teachers Say about the quality of our School Visits and about your Trainer?

“The activities allowed the children to work independently and collaboratively. Learning practically and outside benefitted all children, and allowed them a learning experience they not had before/for a long time” (Nevill Road Primary School)

“The best day ever” (Hollinhey Primary School)

“We had a brilliant day at the Forest. The leaders were very knowledgeable and the programme of activities was pitched just at the right level for our children, linking really well to our curriculum. The leaders used a range of teaching strategies to engage and enthuse the children. The Forest Classroom centre is set up perfectly for school groups - it was great to have all facilities in close proximity on a site that felt very safe, including for lunchtime play. Lots of the children said it had been their favourite school trip of the year. One of our (long serving!) TAs said it was the best organised school trip she had ever been on. Thank you Frances and Matt for a fantastic day out!” (Nether Alderley Primary)

“We were all extremely impressed at the quality of our visit. I feel that the children were very well cared for and Frances and Melanie took the trouble to ensure that all the children were engaged.” (Bollington St Johns Brownies)

“I liked the comparison between the two habitats (forest/grassland) and how we tried to include the 'fair test' idea. This was new this year and I think enhanced the visit. All the leaders/helpers are friendly and speak to the children appropriately - not always a given! Thank you.” (William Gilbert Primary School)

“Excellent location, great leaders - really well organised & sensitive to the needs of our group. The children learned much about working together” (Pott Shrigley Primary School)

“As on previous occasions the programme was well thought out and age appropriate, varied and engaging” (Puss Bank Primary School)

“Everyone loved the trip. It was pitched just right and got everyone's imagination going. The short activities kept everyone's focus and it was lovely to let the children explore and play within the boundaries of the forest. A really brilliant trip - I will recommend it. Jo and Frances were brilliant with the children and used lots of techniques to get their attention. Thank you.” (Upton Priory Primary School)

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