Fieldwork in the Forest

Welcome to Fieldwork in the Forest: a set of free teaching resources produced by Sylva Foundation and partners for use by secondary school geography teachers and pupils.

The film and accompanying fieldwork methodology sheets have been developed and tested by forest educators and secondary geography teachers in an Oxfordshire woodland.

The methodologies can be used in any wooded area to fulfil some of the geography curriculum fieldwork requirements at GCSE and A‐Level in England. These teaching resources may also inspire A‐Level pupils to consider forestry‐related fieldwork for their independent investigations.

Fieldwork in the Forest
free downloads:

Background to the project

In 2015, Sylva Foundation ran a consultation workshop with secondary school teachers. We identified where within the secondary school curriculum that teaching and learning about British forestry could be increased. The teachers advised that developing new geography teaching resources and fieldwork methodologies for use in woodlands and forests would increase teaching, learning and understanding of British forestry amongst secondary school‐aged people in England.

Sylva Foundation is grateful to funders and partners who supported the development of new geography teaching resources as part of the Fieldwork in the Forest project from 2016-2019. These resources were designed and tested in partnership with tutors and interns from the Post Graduate Certificate of Education programme in geography at the Department of Education, University of Oxford.

The film and free downloads provided on this page fulfil one of the actions in England’s Forestry Skills Action Plan which aims to increase the number of young people choosing career pathways in forestry. The Sylva Foundation continues to work with local and national partners to increase the reach and impact of the Fieldwork in the Forest project.

“I enjoyed the new tree techniques and data collection methods”

“this was great, very interesting to be in a woodland and I learnt some very valuable techniques”

University of Oxford Geography PGCE Course Tutor values the Fieldwork in the Forest training highly as it helps new teachers… “to design and deliver fieldwork activities that they will have to do when they teach GCSE and A Level Geography classes”

“I hadn’t done this type of fieldwork before with trees – I enjoyed myself and remembered how fun fieldwork is”

“It was useful to use the equipment and try doing a transect through a forest”