Webinars

These scheduled training events allow you to learn from presenters in real time and ask questions as the webinar takes place. Our webinars are recorded and can be played back at a later time, but you get the most out of this format through live participation. Webinars are one hour long. Webinar series highlight a topic over multiple sessions.

NOTE: Since teaching schedules and variable time zones can make webinar attendance tricky, we'll email the webinar link and materials to you following the scheduled webinar. Watch when it works for you!


Naturally Ready for Kindergarten
Wed., December 6, 2017  |  3-4 PM

Presented in partnership with the Natural Start Alliance
“But will my child be ready for kindergarten?” We hear this question time and again as parents grapple with where to send their children to preschool. This webinar explores how nature preschools prepare children for future learning by supporting growth across developmental domains. Expert presenters discuss universal best practices in early childhood education to examine the question of ‘kindergarten readiness’ from a nature pedagogy perspective. 

This webinar is presented in partnership with the Natural Start Alliance. Presenters include co-hosts Monica Wiedel-Lubinski, founder and executive director of the Eastern Region Association of Forest and Nature Schools (ERAFANS) and Amanda McMickle, director of the Will Smith Zoo School at the San Antonio Zoo. 

Creating Your Nature-based Preschool (webinar series) 
The nature preschool movement is in full swing because of people like you! If you're thinking about starting up your own nature preschool or forest kindergarten, this webinar series gives specific information and tips to help you along the journey.  If you can't attend the live webinar, remember, we will email you the link for viewing. Feel free to register even if you can't join the live event!

Part 1: Planning Basics
Thursday, January 18, 2-3 p.m. EST

Part 2: Marketing and Community Partnerships
Thursday, February 15, 2018, 2-3 p.m. EST

Part 3: Supporting Children, Families and Staff 
Thursday, March 15, 2018, 2-3 p.m. EST


Planning Your Natural Play Space
Friday, March 2, 2018, 2-3 PM
You know that natural play spaces have significant benefits for young children. But how do you go about creating one? This is a quick and dirty intro to planning a natural play space, no matter your setting. We will walk through important design considerations, features, and ways to mobilize your learning community for support.

Past Webinar Topics:

Gratitude, Mindfulness, and Loving Kindness
This webinar explores several approaches to help teachers foster values of kindness, empathy, gratitude, and compassion with young children. Discover how mindful practices can be seamlessly incorporated into your nature-based program, and why they greatly benefit the children in your care.

Nurturing Communication in Your Learning Community
Open lines of communication are essential to ensuring that families feel safe and excited about bring their children to your program. Staff need open communication to feel heard, appreciated and empowered to give their all. Children need our examples and, plenty of opportunities, to communicate their wants and needs, too. This webinar examines some of the unique aspects of communication in a nature-based program and offers several strategies to improve upon your structure. 

Loose Parts, Props, and Tools
Yes, all the elements for meaningful learning are already right there in nature with no enhancement needed. But if you want to facilitate skill development in specific ways, then loose parts, tools and props can supplement outdoor learning experiences. This webinar explores a plethora of materials, tools and props with corresponding activities and processes that you will want to try! 

The Value of Natural Play Spaces       
There is a rich history of natural play spaces the world over. This webinar offers a survey of natural play spaces with a deeper look at substantial skill development linked with outdoor play. Research from academic sources will be offered throughout. If you want to know more about the proven value of natural play spaces, or if you need more talking points for parents, fellow colleagues or grants, this is great place to begin.

Water Play with Young Children
The water cycle is a time-honored topic that early childhood educators share with young children. But how? Another water cycle mobile? This webinar emphasizes how water brings the senses to life as young children discover the states of matter, aquatic habitats, and weather through experiential (wet!) outdoor play.

Back to [Nature] School Basics
Heading back to nature preschool? Join us for a webinar that will explore specific items you'll want to address with children, parents, and teachers. Brush up on policies, routines, and materials that will help everyone get back into the nature preschool groove! If you're establishing a new program, this webinar offers great insight about the basics.  


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