Tackling the climate emergency with your KS3 class

Tree hug sculpture - two grass coloured hands hugging a tree
Tree Hug, 2021 by Monsieur Plant

Inspire students to take action with curriculum-linked resources

Something we’ve been hearing recently from teachers is: my class are feeling anxious about the future. How can I support them to take action and make a difference? 

Trees can play a fantastic role in helping to combat the climate emergency. We’ve designed a range of free KS3 activities to provoke discussion and inspire students to take action. 

This blog explores the practical activities your class can do today, to help make a difference in the future.

Local impact 

Your students may be aware of the global impact of a changing climate, rising sea levels and melting ice caps. But do they understand the changes that are happening on their doorstep, particularly in forests and woodlands?

Introduce your students to the role well managed forests can play in tackling the climate emergency by watching our new video, ‘We are for the climate’.

Kids running in forest

Activities for students 

At Forestry England, we’re working to protect the nation’s forests so that future generations can still enjoy them.

Trees reduce the impact of climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide as they grow and storing it as carbon in wood. They also play a role in reducing flooding and keeping our air clean.  

Wherever you’re based, your students can take part in carbon capture activities to inspire discussion and provoke change. 

Calculate how much carbon the trees near your school are storing with our carbon capture activity sheet. How does this compare to activities that produce carbon? 

Complete a school audit to discover the small changes you can make to reduce carbon emissions. Use the information you've gathered to make a pledge to tackle your school’s carbon footprint. 

What difference can we make? 

We have always planned 60—100 years ahead to make sure we plant the right trees in the right places. It’s important we continue to do this so that trees planted now adapt or are resilient to the future climate.

Talk to your students about how anything they do now can have an important future impact. Ask them to take on the important role of tree health officer for the day. 

Identify common tree pests and diseases and what we can do to help reduce the spread. 

Take part in tree health citizen science by surveying your area. Report signs of pests and diseases to Tree Alert. 

Our climate change resource hub is full of free, curriculum-linked resources for KS3 classes. You’ll find videos with experts, case studies and investigations for your students to carry out.

A path running between autumnal trees

Coming soon

We’re creating resources with our colleagues in Forest Research to develop scientific studies for KS4 students. Sign up to our newsletter to keep up to date.

Explore more

Child looking at bug through magnifying glass, near pink flowers
Learning resources, tips and ideas for educational visits to the forest.
Learning Westonbirt

We're delighted to welcome school and group visits to the nation's forests. We want to share our love for forests and support all teachers and children to experience the benefits of outdoor learning.  

Forests offer fantastic opportunities to bring learning to life through hands-on experiences. No matter what the age or ability there’s something for everyone.

Forest learning and painting activities

Subscribe to our learning newsletter to receive more information and free resources on how the forest can be used as a classroom without walls for students of all ages. 

So what can you expect?

Half-termly updates from the forest Lesson plans for early years through to KS4 Downloadable resources Tips for your school visit


Please note that you will be unable to submit a generic group email address, such as admin@.

Aerial view of forest in autumn colour with a river running through it
Our climate actions
Healthy forests are vital for a sustainable future. With your support, we're making sure the nation's forests will thrive.