Resources

We're constantly looking for great resources for our members. Below is a complete list of the resources we've gathered so far. You can select the types of resources you're looking for. To select more than one type of resource, hold the control button while you make your selections.

This book is about a new movement in children's outdoor play areas, natural playscapes - Where the entire space and is filled with art, hills, pathways, trees, herbs, open areas, sand, water, music, and more... Where children find places to run, climb, dig, pretend, and hide, with opportunities to bellow or be silent.

This guide was written especially for naturalists and environmental educators who are interested in learning more about how and why young children think and act. The guidelines offered here will help educators design developmentally appropriate programs and activities.

Nearly 90% of brain development occurs in the first five years of life. To help maximize a child's learning during this influential time, this set of nature-themed exploration activities instills a sense of wonder, an appreciation for the environment and building blocks toward understanding the natural world. Age appropriate and fun outdoor activities enhance early brain development and learning. Each nature-based activity in the packet also includes a brain insight on the back of the card, giving adults an understanding of the benefits gained through the experience.

Now in its second edition, Nature and Young Children promotes the holistic development of children by connecting them with nature. It offers advice and guidance on how to set up indoor and outdoor nature play spaces as well as encouraging environmentally responsible attitudes, values and behaviour in your early childhood setting.

This guide from the Children and Nature Network provides inspiration, information, tips and resources for those who are—or who might be—interested in creating a Nature Club for Families. The guide provides quick ideas for safe, fun, and hassle-free outings for families.

Nature Explore helps early childhood education centers create nature-based outdoor spaces or classrooms by offering workshops, design consultations, and certification programs. Nature Explore also sells natural play materials for use in outdoor classrooms and provides resources for families. Nature Explore is a joint project of the Arbor Day Foundation and the Dimensions Educational Research Foundation.

This book is an exploration on naturalistic learning within Nature Kindergartens and Forest Schools. Using cases studies and academic research, Clare Warden explores everything that goes into setting up and coordinating a Nature Kindergarten.

Most children’s playgrounds are metal, plastic, concrete and devoid of nature. These guidelines show how to create a new type of nature play and learning area with trees, shrubs, flowers, and natural materials so that children and families can experience and appreciate wildlife and nature at every place they use in every community. Two chapters are devoted to the management, maintenance, and risk management of this type of community space.

Developed by the National Wildlife Federation and Natural Learning Initiative, this guide is an tool for creating enticing outdoor play spaces in your backyard, patio, or balcony. The guide contains easy-to-use instructions for creating features like edible pathways, fairy villages, areas for water or sand play, backyard habitat, and much more.

This guide from The Pennsylvania Land Trust Association explores why nature play is important, its essential characteristics, and what organizations can do to restore children's play.

Environmental education expert David Sobel joins with a variety of colleagues to share their experiences and steps for creating a successful forest kindergarten program.

Children will learn how to build a den from branches, make twig boats to sail across a pond, and voyage through the backyard to find tiny insects and creatures. Activities include invigorating games, natural crafts, and lively adventures, all of which are organized by season. An additional chapter also addresses safe activities for children after dark. Perfect for families, caretakers, and educators, this creative resource encourages children to turn off the television and play outside all year round.

Nature-Watch provides educational nature products and craft activity kits designed to teach children about nature. Since 1987 Nature-Watch has provided environmental science curriculum and nature craft projects to thousands of schools, camps, museums, nature centers, park and recreation programs, zoos, libraries, after-school programs, scouts and many others. Our hands on educational materials and crafts engage, enlighten and enliven the learning experience for children while being a great resource of nature instructional materials for indoor and outdoor educators.

This award-winning documentary takes the viewer on an inspiring education journey to the Nordic North in a cinematic portrait of childhood, education, and play.

An infographic created by the National Environmental Education Foundation giving facts about why being active in nature makes kids healthier. Free printable download in English and Spanish, as a JPEG or PDF.

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