Nature School Programme
The Nature School programme is our unique and outstanding One Day School; offering weekly small group Nature School sessions to children aged 4-12. We run this on Mondays and Wednesdays (during term time) at Battle Hill farm forest park in Pauahatanui, on Tuesdays in Porirua East (nominations taken from local Schools for this fee-free programme) and on Fridays at Kaitawa reserve in Kāpiti.
Did you Know?
NZ Primary School students can have one day per week off school to attend alternative education, with permission from the School Board of Trustees. It’s sometimes referred to as a ‘One day school’.
Under the New Zealand Education Act section 53, Boards may authorise any students to make visits outside the School premises.
As you may be aware, play, particularly free, unstructured and outdoors is essential for healthy brain and socioemotional development and in the early years of life is far more important than direct instruction (FROST, 1998; Szalavitz and Perry, 2010). Our Nature School programme provides an environment where children feel supported to take risks and challenge themselves; promoting development in resilience, social competency, self-confidence, group ethos, leadership, working theories and a whole lot more benefits that are hard to teach in a classroom or centre-based setting. Children will be smarter, better able to get along with others, healthier and happier when they have regular opportunities for free and unstructured play in the out-of-doors (Burdette and Whitaker, 2005).
Our Nature School programme is inspired by the Forest School and udeskole philosophy from Scandinavia, influenced by our NZ location, native flora, fauna, history and culture, and lead by our children! We empower children by giving them the tools and knowledge to challenge themselves, look for learning, fun and to learn about assessing risks and benefits to keep themselves safe. Our experienced and qualified teachers work closely with your children to encourage and extend their learning, while also supporting their social competency and their mana, as they work through decisions and choices. We have an excellent ratio of 1:5 or 1:6, meaning that children feel the freedom to explore on their own terms, while also having the support of experienced and responsive teachers who know how they learn, and give them the freedom to explore and learn in their own way.
Nathan Mikaere Wallis, respected NZ child development expert, says “You will produce a more intelligent child in a free play, child-led environment, in which the teachers are responsive” Watch him talk about free play:
Wellington, New Zealand
027 438 5366