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Contact Us

To book your visit or for General enquires please use our    

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Open Days

We have one open day a year in which anyone is welcome to come and visit us. Date for 2020 to be confirmed. For prospective parents , visits can be arranged  with a phone call to the manager Kirsteen Freer on 01725517807 We also welcome other settings to come and see us in action, there is a small fee for this to cover the cost of the extra staffing needed for this.  

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Ofsted Report

Feel free to check out latest Ofsted Report, follow link below:

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Adventure In The Woods

Our next Adventure in The Woods days will run during the Summer holidays. Please see our Adventure in The Woods page for dates.

A day in the woods costs £30 including lunch and snacks (sibling discount is available)


The wonder of learning through nature.

At the Elves and Fairies Woodland Nursery finding time to experience nature is of high priority.
We are an Outdoor Nursery and Forest School, with a cosy indoor space that we use in extreme weather. We believe that the closer to nature the children are the happier they will be and the more they will learn. Free to explore natures riches, a child’s’ senses are heightened, which enhances their creative and imaginative play.
Our focus is on ‘the whole child’ and helping them develop at their own pace in their own way, whilst achieving the Early Years Foundation Stage goals.
Elves & Fairies Woodland Nursery and it’s staff are committed to help the children achieve their maximum potential. through outdoor play and learning they develop:

  • creative play
  • high self esteem and confidence
  • good language, social and communication skills
  • necessary skills to keep themselves safe
  • healthy lifestyles and diet
  • essential skills for the future.

Surrounded by nature.

During our sessions the children go for woodland walks and picnics, jump in puddles, chase butterflies and clamber over fallen branches, make sand castles, mud pies and imaginative potions, smell flowers, rain and damp leaves, listen to bird song, the cracking of ice and the wind in the trees.
They grow vegetables and flowers, learn camp fire skills, prepare and watch their food being cooked. They feel at one with nature, enjoying themselves in all but the most inclement weather, when the children spend time in our beautiful indoor space playing with wooden toys and natural materials, enriching their creative life with activities such as painting, singing, dancing, story telling, sewing, weaving and baking bread.
Parents/carers are invited to experience a Nursery session and as we wish your child’s first experience of Nursery to be a happy one, they are also welcome to stay in the Nursery during the settling in period.
Ofsted regulated reg. EY422487

Our Services

Outdoor Nursery & Forest School — Edmondsham, Nr Verwood, Dorset

Set in a beautiful environment, at Elves & Fairies Woodland Nursery and Edmondsham Forest School we aim to bring out the creative and imaginative side of your child and to inspire a sense of wonder and reverence for nature through our holistic, friendly approach. Keeping our groups small, with a high adult to child ratio, helps children feel comfortable and secure, which enables them to learn, grow and gain confidence in a joyful and natural way.

Forest School

At the Edmondsham Forest School and the Elves & Fairies Woodland Nursery, the philosophy is to inspire and encourage individuals of all ages. Through positive outdoor experiences using nature as the teacher. Forest School provides (...)

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Elves and Fairies Woodland Nursery is an Outdoor Kindergarten & Forest School in Edmondsham, Nr Verwood, Dorset. We are ideally situated on the border of Dorset, Hampshire and Wiltshire. The wonder of learning through nature. At The Elves (...)

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Toddler Group

This group offers a calm and enjoyable opportunity for families to make friends, sing songs and rhymes and go for walks and picnics together. And for those who wish to send their child to our (...)

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Adventure in the Woods

Adventure in The Woods  holiday sessions are open to all children from 3 - 8 and 8 -11 years of age, whether or not they attend Kindergarten. We also welcome the 2 year old's who (...)

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What Parents Think



By keeping the Kindergarten group small, with a high ratio of adult to child supervision and being sensitive to the needs of the individual, we aim to bring out the best in the children by means of creative activities and imaginative play, supporting each child in their development and helping them to reach their true potential at their own pace, without pushing them forward before they are ready. Our approach to educating the child is through play and role modelling, and we encourage them to be creative and imaginative by surrounding them with simple, natural toys and fabrics when they are inside and by spending as much time as possible outside in the woods and fields where they feel at one with nature and the changing seasons.

Throughout the session the children are encouraged to extend their vocabulary and fluency in speech by singing, reciting rhymes, playing circle games, listening to and being told stories, acting out puppet shows and taking part in sharing sessions. During Ring-time, meal times and general play and activities, the children are able to take part in conversations with both staff and the other children, and discussions on many different subjects take place. This enables the children to become confident communicators with a wide vocabulary.
Each day both large and small chalk boards are available for mark making. Clip boards with paper, crayons and colored pencils are also put out each day, so that the children may take them wherever they like to draw pictures and practice their mark making. During Ring-time "I hear with my little ear" may be played, encouraging the children to recognize the sounds that make up words, and various alphabet jigsaw puzzles are available to aid them in letter recognition. When we are outside in the woods there are many opportunities for the children to make progress in their mark making and letter recognition e.g. dragging sticks through the mud, finding sticks that look like letters of the alphabet or creating letters from sticks, seeing letters in the trees or clouds. We also take ID sheets and wild flower books etc. on walks and the children are able to look up the various things they find. Children are helped to understand that written symbols form words and carry meaning through the reading of stories to individuals and small groups. Both inside and outside we provide a basket of beautiful books for children to look at, each with a small amount of writing. This gives children an opportunity to become familiar with books, how to handle them with care and to become aware of their use both for reference and as a source of enjoyment. Through these different opportunities we hope to give the children a life long love of books and learning.
Through playing games and singing songs children are given opportunities to become familiar with the sorting, matching, ordering, sequencing and counting activities which form the basis for early maths. Children are assisted in learning and using the vocabulary of maths, identifying objects by shape, position, size, volume, weight and numbers through songs, rhymes and jigsaw puzzles, use of tally books, stick collection, games and conversations during the day. The children learn to count through activities such as laying out plates and cups at snack time and singing songs such as "One, Two, Buckle My Shoe". They make simple calculations through songs like "Ten Currant Buns", play sorting games with colored beads and shells etc., learn to match numbers and pictures with Dominoes and Jigsaws, use Russian Dolls to become aware of order and size, learn about weights through activities like cookery, shapes through making biscuits and cutting paper , and through general play, both indoors and outdoors, they learn many things to help them relate to numbers.
A range of equipment and opportunities, both indoors and outdoors, allows children to develop confidence and enjoyment in the use and development of their own bodily skills e.g. rocking horses, balancing beams, wood chip pit, mud pit, country walks, gardening, sawing wood, screwing and hammering in nails. With adult supervision children are able to safely create and meet physical challenges, developing necessary skill and control in moving, climbing and balancing. Music and movement, folk dancing, hopping and jumping games also help them develop these skills. Children are supported in the development of the fine motor skills required to use tools such as pens and pencils and the handling of small objects with necessary control and precision, with the use of finger rhymes, sewing, weaving, bread kneading, sanding wood, wax modelling, finger knitting, painting and drawing, cutting paper with scissors and vegetables with a knife etc.
Children are encouraged to be creative and imaginative in their play, taking part in various activities and listening to stories. Painting, gluing, drawing, modelling, paper cutting, making pictures out of seeds, flowers etc. provide open-ended exploration of colour, shape and texture. Listening to stories without seeing the pictures enables children to be imaginative and create their own pictures in their heads. By having natural, rather simple toys without lots of detail and in the outdoor environment, all of natures riches, children are given the chance to create for themselves. Building houses, caves etc. out of clothes horses and blankets or branches and sticks enables them to use their imagination rather than having things ready made for them. Shells, pine cones, twigs, stones etc. become biscuits, fish or diamonds and when inside, both dressing-up clothes and puppets give them the means to create their own stories and in a therapeutic way, allow the child to work through any difficulties that they may be experiencing.
A safe, stimulating environment allows the children to explore and experiment with a range of natural materials such as clay and beeswax softened for modelling, kneading bread and watching it rise, planting seeds and watching them grow. They learn to observe the features of objects and substances, recognizing the differences, patterns and similarities. They are assisted in exploring and understanding their environment by activities such as going for walks in the fields and woods, discovering what grows there e.g. blackberries, which are made into jam, crumbles and even paintings, mushrooms and toadstools which may or may not be poisonous. Festivals from different cultures are celebrated, and the children take part in seasonal crafts and activities. Foods from around the world are cooked and eaten at snack time and the children learn how to use cooking utensils e.g. knives and graters. Songs and dances from different countries are taught and stories told from other cultures. Sewing and simple woodwork projects, such as making a weaving loom, enable the children to extend their understanding of how things are made and used and where appropriate, parents are encouraged to visit and give the children an example of their work.
Within our small, caring environment, children are individually supported in developing confidence, high self-esteem and self-respect. They are encouraged to work and concentrate both independently e.g. bread making, painting, sewing, and also to take part in the life of the group, sharing and co-operating with the other children and adults e.g. ring-time, circle games, sharing sessions, snack-time and general play. Through the various activities, conversations and practical example of others they learn acceptable ways to express their own feelings and to have respect for others and their feelings. Children are given the opportunity as appropriate to take responsibility for themselves and the group, its members and its property e.g. helping to tidy up, putting things away, passing small snack bowls around to others, hanging up their coats and putting shoes on racks. Children are encouraged to develop skills to promote self-reliance, such as putting on coats and shoes, washing hands, going to the toilet etc. In order to promote self-esteem we encourage children to become competent in various skills e.g. chopping vegetables, seed planting, bread making, sewing, etc.

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If you would like to come and visit our Unique setting , meet our children and see first hand our out standing setting, contact us on:

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8, Edmondsham Village Nr Wimborne, Dorset, BH21 5RF

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