For preschoolers, nature makes up their entire world. It provides the wonder and excitement that preschoolers thrive off of; it is where children live, learn, and play. Nature allows children to be inquisitive and imaginative while being physically active — that’s why nature preschools are loved by educators!
What is a nature preschool?
A nature preschool is any preschool that uses the outdoors as its primary space for activities.
Nature preschools may seem overwhelming or even impractical, but educators love them! Here’s 3 reasons why:
- Nature preschools stimulate knowledge. Through nature preschools children begin to understand that people depend on the natural world for survival. Through this understanding children learn that nature provides what we eat, drink, breathe, and wear. Nature preschools also provide educators a way to explain the impact people have on nature.
- Nature preschools help develop emotional competencies. Many may not associate nature with emotion, but nature provides an ever changing sensory aspects and a constantly changing aesthetic as seasons change. This constantly changing environment can bring excitement and joy to little ones, while also leaving them in awe of the natural beauty. Through this exploration of nature as it changes throughout the year, children also develop a sense of caring and respect for nature.
- Nature preschools teach children new skills. When children are out in nature the first thing they do is observe their surroundings. Nature provides a great way to have preschoolers demonstrate their ability to gather information via their senses. Nature preschools also help children learn how to identify similarities and differences in items they find and how to group these items based on how similar or different they are from one another.
Nature preschools are a great way for children to connect learning with play. By being outside with nature children are able to develop lifelong skills in a space that encourages them to remain imaginative and explorative.