Professional Development Opportunities

Resources

ONGOING

Nature-Based Early Childhood Courses

January, Spring, and Summer Semesters at Antioch University, New England

The Nature Pre-School and Forest Kindergarten movement has been thriving in Europe for the last three decades and has recently taken root in the United States.  Currently, there is a lack of professional development, training, leadership, in this new field of nature-based early childhood education.  The Education Department at Antioch New England is initiating a new program to train teachers, administrators and founders of Nature Pre-Schools and Forest Kindergartens commencing in summer 2013. 
 

Project Learning Tree Early Childhood Workshops

Held throughout the country. Search webpage by state and by type (Early Childhood).

Project Learning Tree educator workshops are open to anyone, held at convenient times, and are offered for free or at a nominal charge. These workshops are designed to help you learn how to incorporate PLT activities into your current and future programming; meet other local professionals interested or already involved in environmental education; become part of a network that offers you follow-up resources and opportunities, and learn about environmental education.
 

Nebraska Growing Up WILD Workshops

Held throughout Nebraska for early childhood educators.  Scroll down and search for Growing Up WILD.

Growing Up WILD is an early childhood education program that builds on children’s sense of wonder about nature and invites them to explore wildlife and the world around them. During the training workshop participants will sample activities and receive a curriculum and activity guide. 

 

Illinois Project Learning Tree Early Childhood Workshops

Held throughout Illinois for early childhood educators.

PLT Environmental Experiences for Early Childhood includes over 130 experiences that engage children in outdoor play and exploration and is specifically designed for educators who work with children ages three to six. During the training workshop participants will sample activities and receive a curriculum and activity guide along with accompanying music CD.

 

Illinois Growing Up WILD Early Childhood Workshops

Held throughout Illinois for early childhood educators.

Growing Up WILD is an early childhood education program that builds on children’s sense of wonder about nature and invites them to explore wildlife and the world around them. During the training workshop participants will sample activities and receive a curriculum and activity guide.

 

Consulting Children:  Claire Warden's Interactive Online Courses

Available online for early childhood educators.

Claire Warden presents a selection of bite-sized online training through video, practical steps and downloads. These accessible courses take approximately one hour to complete providing quality, inspirational ideas, motivation, improved practice, and value for your money. There are 5 live courses now available including Floorbooks, Floorbooks and the Brain, Floorbooks and Talk, Nature Pedagogy and Risk It!

 

Nature Explore Workshops for Educators

Held throughout the country for adults who work with children.

Engaging, inspiring research-based Nature Explore educator workshops support comprehensive learning with nature. Designed for adults who work with children in many ways (from schools, to early childhood programs, to environmental education programs), each hands-on Nature Explore Workshop is offered regionally, or may be scheduled at your own site.

 

Kindergarten Teacher Training and Certification

Held monthly at Cedarsong Nature School on Vashon Island, Washington

As nature-based preschools and forest kindergartens become more popular, it is important that we maintain standards of excellence for this model. This 20-hour teacher training course prepares you to be the best forest kindergarten teacher or director possible.

2017

July

July 24, 2017 to July 28, 2017
North Branch Nature Center
Montpelier, VT
This five-day standards based nature immersion course is geared for PreK-12 teachers, assistants, aides and administrators. During the week, a leadership team of professional nature immersion specialists guides teachers in direct application of outdoor classroom routines as well as ways to incorporate NGSS and Common Core into those routines. NOTE: this week in July (considered Session 2) is specifically recommended for preschool teachers. Session 1 is held June 26-30.

August

August 3, 2017 to August 5, 2017
Seattle, WA
The 2017 Nature-Based Preschool National Conference will be held on August 3-5 at Seattle University in the heart of Seattle. Join us for engaging sessions, diverse site tours, professional networking, and connecting with nature.

October

October 7, 2017 to October 8, 2017
Raintree School
2100 S. Mason Rd
St. Louis, MO 63131
It's back again -- The 2nd Annual Forest School Congress of the Midwest! And this fall, we're spending the night in the forest with 120 of our favorite experiential educators and forest school practitioners. Bring your tent and sleeping bag - we're camping in the woodland for two beautiful fall days filled with fire making, tool making, storytelling, the theory and practice of forest school, and more! Experiential educators of every grade level, preschool through highschool, and forest school teachers of every skill level are invited to attend this year's micro-retreat.
October 7, 2017 to October 8, 2017
St. Louis, MO
Raintree School is hosting Vaskebjørn: 2nd Annual Forest School Congress of the Midwest- a gathering of educators aimed at promoting an informed, significant, and realistic change in education while sharing innovative approaches and research to enhance place-based learning in wild spaces. Join us this fall for a two-day outdoor extravaganza. Participants will enjoy a relaxing weekend to hone forest school practice, deepen understandings of the forest school pedagogy, and connect with fellow educators.