The Nature Explore Classroom at
Caterpillar Clubhouse Nature Preschool
I am a state-licensed home childcare and preschool. I started providing childcare in 2009 and worked my way up in our Paths to Quality Program to Level 3. I am a true believer that a child that is exposed to the natural world around them will have heightened respect and deep regard of their environment.
Teaching children to be kind to even the smallest creatures is a value they can carry with them throughout their whole lives. Exposing the kids I care for to bugs early on is not only about education but about empathy and understanding. It is teaching love and kindness, acceptance and tolerance.
We have a raised garden that we pick clean and eat. The kids love to take some of the produce home to share with their families. We learn about growing food, natural cycles, composting, recycling and reducing waste. Favorite areas of play in our outdoor classroom are the Imaginary/Sensory area with sand, water play, and mud kitchen, the Active area with climbing and balancing equipment, tree stumps and logs and the Art/Crafts/ Picnic area.
We follow a primarily outdoor-based curriculum which encourages a strong connection to the natural environment and a genuine curiosity about the world. Sharing daily pictures on our private family Facebook group allows families to have conversations with their child about all they learned.
At the end of the school year, we have outdoor graduation at Wrangler and Friends Farm. Lindsay, the owner, has farm animals that she uses as tools to teach about caring, showing love, patience and comes twice a month. She makes lesson plans that we work on with our curriculum. Parents and grandparents enjoy graduation and a cookout, we sing songs, feed the animals and show all we learned that year.