It has been a while since we have updated you on the happenings of our organization. Exciting news is that we are back in the forest, learning and playing together in person! It has been a whirlwind these past few months but we are beyond grateful for our staff and the learning community that helped us get to where we are today. This is our third year being in our forest classroom where we are learning and growing in nature together! It has been wonderful to see our friends again and we are grateful to be in such a beautiful location, rich with resources and learning opportunities. Reopening program during the pandemic has had its obstacles, however, we are taking the appropriate precautions to ensure that we can safely continue with in-person classes.
The great thing about being an outdoor school is that social distancing is already made easier.
There are also the added psychological benefits of being in sunlight and fresh air that is a necessity during this time. As an organization we are following the up-to-date CDC guidelines and have suspended our seasonal workshops for the time being. However, our nature immersion program is up and running three days a week, and we hope to re-launch our workshops and family nature play class as soon as we can.
During program we have created subgroups so that each class has a pod of five children to avoid cross contamination with other groups. We have designated hand washing times and are making sure there is no sharing of materials. While the learning curve of operating during a pandemic has been steep, we are thrilled to be in nature and giving the children an enriching and nourishing educational experience.
We are in our fifth week of program, and this week our theme is Salmon and Autumn leaves.
This is an awesome way to learn about the cycles of seasons and how animals and nature are intricately intertwined.
Last week, our focus was minibeasts! The kids loved making bug hotels, finding roly-polys, slugs, and learning about the different minibeasts that live in the forest.
We have also focused a lot on fungi. This is such a fun week because Illahee is FULL of fungi. The kids are always in awe of the different sizes, designs, and textures of fungi we find. Miss Robin brought in different types of mushrooms so the kids could safely identify and touch them. The kids had a great time cutting up the mushrooms and making paint stamps.
It has been wonderful to see our friends again and we are grateful to be in such a beautiful location, rich with resources and learning opportunities. Reopening program during the pandemic has had its obstacles, however, we are taking the appropriate precautions to ensure that we can safely continue with in-person classes.