"I took a walk in the woods and came out taller than the trees."
- Henry Thoreau
In our nature inspired program we allow children to explore the natural world in which we live. We are guided by the natural rhythms of the earth and allow nature to be a teacher. Our outdoor learning environment is set up as a natural classroom with opportunities to explore, create, connect and learn all in a beautiful outdoor setting.
Discovery, exploration, hands-on experiences, observation and appreciation occur naturally and positively complement a child's learning process and well-being. The benefits of an outdoor program are numerous but here are a few to help you understand the effects of a nature inspired program.
Nature is equipped for every child's learning style.
It naturally extends the learning process in all academic areas.
It provides opportunities for language expression and conversation with peers through discovery and collaboration.
Children make discoveries big and small.
Nature provides exciting playgrounds where children can balance, climb, jump, run and hide.
Nature allows children the time to be completely immersed in their games and imagination.
Nature provides opportunities to be creative with the use of mud, sticks, and stones.
Nature not only allows children to use all their senses but also the opportunity for quiet reflection.
Todd Christopher said it best in his book The Green Hour:
"If you could design the perfect learning environment for children, what would it look like?
Certainly, it would be engaging-stoking the fires of fascination while at the same time extinguishing boredom. It would invigorate not just the intellect but the whole child- mind, body and spirit. It would activate all of the senses and reward a child's curiosity with discovery and wonder. And it would instruct intimately while conveying lessons at a grand scale. Such and environment exists, and it can be found in a nearby park, on a local trail, or even in your own backyard."
Our program provides all this and more. There is a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor learning areas and experiences. The teacher serves as collaborator, guide and provoker of possibility. We allow the child's interests to guide us. We encourage children to use their senses through a discovery process, creating and collaborating with peers while using the natural world around them.