Nature-based Early Learning Program (3–5 years old)
Children will discover the wonder and beauty found within the Arboretum’s 1,700 acres as they play, learn, and grow in this nine-month, nature-based early-childhood program. Exploring nature through the changing seasons provides the perfect landscape for fostering adaptive life skills while laying a foundation for a continuous love of learning.
The mission of Little Trees is to help young children develop a deep and meaningful relationship with the natural world through outdoor play and emergent discovery. The Little Trees curriculum is seasonally-based and interest-driven.
Through natural curiosity, a child may wonder about the leaves changing color, the sudden appearance of a puddle, fresh animal tracks in the snow, or the appearance of migrating birds flying overhead.
These daily explorations and provocations complement what is occurring within the natural environment, turning these phenomena into investigative themes. As young student scientists, children use field guides, tools and natural materials to delve into these topics while engaging in activities that build physical, social-emotional, and cognitive skills. This approach fuels organically created experiences all year—deeply resonant events born from the children’s innate curiosity and connection to the natural world around them.
Enrollment for the 2023-24 school year will open in January. Contact Meg Gessler to register or for more information on the program.
Roots Class (3-yr-olds): Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Saplings Class (4-yr-olds): Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Trees Class (mixed ages 4- and 5-yr-olds): Mondays through Thursdays, 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.