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Learning Outside the Box
Blog Post
Date: April 15, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Learning Outside the Box

“The kids spend all day, every day outside!” Our colleagues reported after a recent visit to Auchlone Nature Kindergarten in Scotland. Nature Kindergartens spring from the belief that children thrive best outdoors, where learning happens naturally. “What about when it...
OutlastTablesSeating
Video
Date: April 10, 2014

See Where a Table Can Take you!

There’s no better place for learning than the great outdoors! Outlast Tables and Seating will help extend your classroom outside, connecting children to the natural world on a daily basis. Watch how something as simple as a table can add new possibilities and dimensions to your outdoor space.
go outside
Blog Post
Date: April 08, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Go Outside and Play!

“When I was a youngster,” writes Rolland G. Smith in The Wisdom of Nature, “my mother would say, ‘Go outside and play.’ And I would, with all the other kids in the neighborhood. We learned a lot about nature and ourselves playing outside. For one thing, we quickly...
teachers are leaders
Blog Post
Date: April 01, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Are You a Leader?

“I call that ‘simultaneous drowning,’” he said with a soft twinkle in his eyes, “when three or four critical things all happen at once and you must do something unexpected, quickly. But don’t let it take away your zest for teaching or your love for the...
Leadership
Article
Date: March 25, 2014
Author: Gigi Schweikert

Teachers: the Most Important Leaders of All

Are You a Leader? You may not think of yourself as a leader, but you probably are. There are all kinds of leaders: the conventional ones—CEOs, managers, coaches, principals of schools, or directors of centers—and the more subtle, but just as influential, leaders we encounter in daily...
Binoculars
Blog Post
Date: March 25, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Hunt for Spring

Zebras with purple stripes, dragons, and crocus shoots were among the list of sighted objects as we walked around our neighborhood looking for signs of spring with our binoculars. It is amazing how a simple prop can help sharpen a child’s observation skills. And equally remarkable how the...
Montessori in the Outback
Blog Post
Date: March 18, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Montessori in the Outback

“Our children need to fall, they need to climb, and they need to get dirty,” writes Geoffrey Bishop in his article Learning through Nature: A real-life testimonial. “They need to experiment and to stretch their limits…Allow them the freedom to explore, allow them to...
Learning from Nature
Article
Date: March 18, 2014
Author: Geoffrey Bishop

Learning Through Nature

Our children need to fall, they need to climb, and they need to get dirty. They need to experiment and to stretch their limits. My parents gave me a gift—it was the gift of Nature as a prepared environment, a place to play freely. Let us give every child the same gift.
When the Tables Turn
Blog Post
Date: March 11, 2014
Author: Rhonda

When the Tables Turn

Almost before the cameras flashed, the intended unveiling ceremony for our new outdoor products had evolved into a stand-off between a pirate (decked out in a firefighter hat) and some princesses who refused to relinquish their castle. It all turned out okay in the end though; soon they were all...
worm
Blog Post
Date: March 04, 2014
Author: Rhonda

We need more sticks and grass!

"I never teach my pupils; I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn." Albert Einstein Mia loved worms. Three minutes in the garden and she could be found crouched over in the dirt, an intent look on her face and a rapidly growing collection of squiggling worms in the...
oobleck
Blog Post
Date: February 25, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

"This snow! This fog! This sunshine! This rain! BAHH! These four things that come down from my sky!" If King Derwin thought things were bad in the Kingdom of Didd, he obviously didn’t have to deal with the brutal, erratic weather we’ve had this winter! "I want something new to come...
Clatter
Blog Post
Date: February 18, 2014
Author: Rhonda

De clatter your classroom

“Early childhood classrooms are busy, active, and energetic places filled with a cacophony of sounds including children’s laughter, conversations, and an occasional loud skirmish over a favorite toy. While this type of auditory clatter positively impacts children’s engagement...
Clatter
Article
Date: February 18, 2014
Author: Sandra Duncan

Clatter in the Classroom

You are cordially invited to begin to de-clatter your classroom. Begin to think differently about how your physical space is structured and organized. Search for new ways of creating transparency in your space.
trike
Blog Post
Date: February 11, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Never too old to play!

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” George Bernard Shaw There was no doubt that the trikes were among the most valued equipment in our urban daycare. During the seemingly endless winter days the wheels were kept constantly turning...
sand play
Blog Post
Date: February 04, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Exploring Sand Play

“Damage repair! Damage repair!” The little engineers worked with beaverish intensity, packing handfuls of wet sand on the eroded bank. A shout of “more!” brought another bucketful of water gushing down the newly repaired chute, the force liquefying another sandy curve....
Sand Play
Article
Date: February 04, 2014
Author: Dr. F. Joyce Gerber

Exploring Sand Play

Sand and water hold a tremendous attraction for young children, but as time for play is increasingly threatened by standards and curriculum driven activities, how can teachers validate the educational value and necessity of sand in the classroom?
pinecone craft
Blog Post
Date: January 28, 2014
Author: Rhonda

Feed the Birds

Invite nature right to your window with this fun and simple craft that children of any age will enjoy. Making pinecone bird feeders: Combine. Mix the following ingredients until a sticky consistency: 2 cups wild bird seeds 3 cups bread crumbs 2 cups shortening (add more if...
pinecone craft
Video
Date: January 28, 2014

Bird Slideshow

Winter is a great time to observe backyard birds as they will readily come to a well-stocked bird feeder. This project provides a great chance to discuss how birds survive the cold, winter blasts and what they find to eat. Find the instructions and recipe here.
Toddler Village
Blog Post
Date: January 21, 2014
Author: Rhonda

The Stuff of Childhood

Jennifer Birckmayer, an advocate for children for over 40 years and a retired Cornell professor, shared this story with us about the necessity of open-ended playthings for children: “Back in the days when I had to create a lot of my own equipment for my childcare center, I was particularly...
catalog image
Blog Post
Date: January 14, 2014
Author: Trevor

What Will It Be Next?

How long did people pile up books on their desks before someone invented the bookshelf? And how long did teachers stack up cots before someone invented the vertical cot cart? The answer to the first question: centuries ago. The answer to the second: just now. As everyone knows, the cot you...

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