3.006 Process

Walls that let the wind blow through

In 1912, Toronto’s first forest school opened in response to the highly contagious tuberculosis crisis. Entirely open to the elements, it engaged fresh air, experimentation and embodied experience as strategies for learning about the world. Through physically connecting with nature, the forest schools that sprung up in great numbers thereafter were in high demand, teaching basic living principles and learning from how our actions directly affect our surroundings.

In our studio, and in response to our renewed need for fresh air, we explore our future classrooms as frames for nature. Our lessons are elemental and nourishing, both of human and planet: Planting, growing and harvesting. Foraging, discovering and adventuring. Collecting, building and recycling. Storytelling, sharing and star gazing. Dissolving the walls of our classrooms, we look to let the wind blow in and the dreams blow out.

Toronto's first forest school, 1912

Could it be that outdoor learning is not just a classroom placed in nature, but rather being in nature itself, interacting with it, learning from, in, with nature?