Feature Stories

Image credit: Briana's Childcare, Tucson, AZ

February 2019

Monica Farmer and Tania Hinojosa

Books not only foster children’s literacy and language development but can also expand children’s understanding of the world and love of nature. Here are some tips for incorporating a range of books into your nature-based early learning program.

January 2019

Sally Anderson

Sally Anderson had always sought to connect Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing students with nature. So when she learned about the Forest School model, she knew she found a philosophy and practice that she could bring to her preschool program.

Image credit: Best Day Ever movie

December 2018

David Sobel

The recently published "A Forest Days Handbook" demonstrates that young children can learn their letters and numbers AND get stronger, healthier, and more resilient in a nature-based learning environment.

November 2018

Sarah Foglesong

How do we welcome and affirm the diverse cultures of our students and the larger community in which we work? Here are six tips for developing cultural empathy and bringing a multicultural lens to nature-based teaching practice.

October 2018

Josh Falk

Outdoor interactions with nature in early childhood centers are proven to foster children's healthy growth and development. These tips from the National Wildlife Federation will help you to advocate for licensing regulations that support the installation of outdoor learning environments in your state.

August 2018

Anna Dutke

Nature-based early learning programs require teachers to have a different skillset than a typical naturalist or a traditional early childhood educator. These interview questions will help you to evaluate the candidate’s fit with a program that truly puts nature at the heart of the learning experience.

Summer 2018 Special

Beth Wilson

Summer brings a change of pace to our lives as nature-based early childhood educators. How do we make the most of it to practice self-care, reflect on our work, and come back in the fall rejuvenated and reaffirmed in our commitment to nature-based teaching?

May 2018

Jessica Grill

What happens when you want to offer early childhood nature programming but don’t have the space, personnel, or other resources to run a full-scale nature preschool? One answer may lie in short-form programming such as nature playdates.

April 2018

Samantha Leder

How do cultural ideas about childhood, development, and learning impact nature-based early childhood education? Samantha Leder shares some of the lessons she learned during her study abroad semester in a Danish forest kindergarten.

March 2018

Tracy Neal

How can we document early learning in the outdoors? Nature journals can help to develop children's observational and representational skills while serving as tangible developmental reference points for parents, educators, and the children themselves.