1. Kinderland Gallery
    Every day is a new adventure, an exploration of uncharted terrain, a chance to discover something awe-inspiring, an opportunity to re-imagine how an object can be used... all combined with a sense of timelessness which encourages creativity and self-direction.
  2. Calendar & Parent Info
    Interested in enrolling for our 2017 / 2018 Session? Everything you need can be found right here: from application forms, to our annual calendar, to a list of recommended clothing
  3. Additional Resources
    Want to learn more about Forest Kindergartens? Get your questions answered and find additional links on our Resources page.
The best way to learn about the world is to get dirty in it
A day in the life of a forest kindergartener
No two days look the same, but each one starts with curiosity and wonder. A primary benefit of child-led and inquiry-based education is that the children truly retain the information, rather than memorizing it for a test and then forgetting it the next week. Instead of sitting at a desk and completing worksheet after worksheet on the various types of soil, the children get their hands dirty in it. They become puzzled and ask, "Why is this mud more crumbly than the mud over there?" When they experience it viscerally, they remember it; it has meaning; it has context.

Which would have a greater impact on you:  subtracting 5 - 2 on a worksheet, or physically measuring the difference in the height of standing water from one day to the next with a yard stick? Which would you remember:  reading a textbook article about the anatomy of an insect, or watching a ladybug crawl up your arm and noticing it has six legs and two antennae? And then, you might become curious and ask, "What does an insect use its antannae for?"

For most of human history, we have learned primarily through observation and experience. A classroom doesn't require four walls and a stack of textbooks.....

It only requires curious students.
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Children cannot bounce off the walls if we take away the walls.
~ Erin K. Kenny, Cedarsong Nature School
Unstructured Free Time in Nature
Learning to Assess Risk Develops Self-confidence
There is no better way to develop a deep and personal connection to the natural world than to get "lost" in it.  Time in nature is the antidote to sensory-overload commonly found in our contemporary world.

The term "Nature Deficit Disorder" was coined by Richard Louv in his 2005 book Last Child in the Woods. It is believed that children are experiencing such a large volume and wide range of so-called behavior disorders due to the lack of unstructured time, freedom to explore nature, and too much time sitting still (in front of a tv, cell phone, or at a school desk).
Climbing trees, one of childhood's most recognizable rites of passage, is all but a lost art in today's fear-driven, overly-litigous society. But learning to fall and pick oneself back up, both physically and mentally/emotionally, is one of the best ways to develop grit and resiliance.

Joyce at Childhood Beckons notes that climbing trees:  develops gross-motor skills, builds critical thinking skills, expends energy, exercises imagination, and "delivers happiness". What more could we want for our young children?
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