A few months ago we pulled Dean out of the parent participation preschool he attended since September. It was such a hard choice… But definitely the right one for our family!
We’ve found an excellent outlet for Dean’s love of the outdoors – and it
Nature Preschool’s have been gaining more and more attention lately. So much so that urban areas are starting to introduce them in local forested areas.
Dean thrives outdoors. He loves digging in the dirt, playing with rocks, searching for worms and splashing in puddles. He has an imagination that can turn a simple tree stump into a castle, a twig into his sword, and his brother into an invader.
When we attended a local open house for a preschool near us for this Fall, we found out about the pilot program for a nature preschool near by. They were starting earlier than we were planning. We had planned on keeping Dean in his current preschool until he finished the year and then moving preschools in September, but this program had two month-long sessions starting this Spring.
So we took the dive, left our parent participation preschool and signed up for this program.
And there’s not an ounce of regret!
Dean is loving every moment of his nature preschool. He has a blast exploring the outdoors, playing with friends and “fishing” in the duck pond.
He’s filthy, stinky and happy after every class.
A great thing about his preschool is that it’s close to us – it takes 30 minutes to bike there, as opposed to the 50-55 minutes it used to take us to skytrain and bus to his old preschool. It’s close enough that we aren’t spending an entire day on a two hour class. And we’ve even made it home in time for Sammy to nap in his own bed (or ours, as the case usually is) quite a few times!
Another great thing is that while Dean is off, galavanting with his class, Sammy is getting some fresh air. And when it’s cold and rainy (and Mom is being a wuss), we can head inside to the Nature Centre where they have an open learning room that is free to drop in during the week. When it’s not wet, we spend the time outdoors. Sammy gets to play in the dirt, watch the birds and spot airplanes flying overhead. (And I get to socialize with a friend who has her son in the program, too, while we wait for our boys to finish class)
I’m thrilled with the program and the teachers. They keep the kids busy with fun activities, adventures and exploration. And hey, props to them to taking 16 kids into a forest on rainy days!
It’s been fun watching them as they explore the different areas of the forest from afar. We’ve watched them use sticks as fishing rods, baskets and ropes for pulleys, plant sunflowers and just get messy!
We’ll be returning in the Fall for another year of classes before Dean heads off to Kindergarten! And then I hope that timing works for Kindergarten drop off to get Sammy into Nature Preschool, too!