Our Forest Kindergarten Education Model
Nature Nuts follows The Cedarsong Way® Education Model which includes:
- All Weather Nature Immersion time every day; there is no indoor space. Nature Immersion is defined by Erin Kenny as “unstructured free time in nature resulting in an intimate, deep and personal connection to the natural world”.
- Child-led Flow Learning
- Inquiry-based Teaching Style
- Child-inspired, Child-directed Documentation of Emergent Curriculum
- Place-based Education in a permanent location.
- Small class sizes, low 1:4 teacher to child ratio
Nature Nuts promotes children’s connection with nature on three levels:
Environmental Stewardship - (Education for Sustainability):
The compassion-scaffolding in every lesson cultivates in children the ability to retain and develop the sense of nurturing they are born with.
Nature Nuts learn to self-soothe with nature, experiencing firsthand how nature can be a healing salve that calms and relaxes.
When children’s authentic curiosity leads to their own experiential nature observations and discoveries, it encourages scientific experimentation and conclusion; lessons are understood more fully and the information retained more deeply.
These critical factors for a successful forest kindergarten program are followed:
- Attentive monitoring of children’s basic requirements: clothing, hunger, safety, and bathroom needs
- Right teachers -- Fully modeling and embracing nature pedagogy & respect for all of life
- Creation of healthy community involvement and relations with teachers, families, caregivers, children, the land and wider community
- Careful and continuing assessment of risks and hazards.
Specific subjects studied in the Forest Kindergarten Program:
Forest ecosystems, Biology, Botany, Ethnobotany, Entomology, Ornithology, Zoology, Engineering, Environmental Science, Geology, Math, Physics, Music, Drama, Art and Literacy.
Life and Kindergarten Readiness Skills Gained in our Forest Kindergarten program:
- Willingness to take risks
- Excitement about learning
- Respect for others
- Physical stamina
- Risk & hazard assessment
- Emotional balance/resilience
- Critical thinking
- Divergent thinking
- Peer communication
- Conflict resolution
- Cooperation and teamwork Kindness