Spreading the Seeds of Nature
Mud Day is one of my favorite days of the year! It brings together two elements of early learning that PIC is committed to provide—play-based learning and meaningful experiences with nature.
PIC's Magic Circle nature playground offers (especially on Mud Day) unstructured, nature play with endless opportunities for exploration and discovery. Teachers of our youngest learners offered similar experiences on the Tot Lot.
I am proud to share the recent spotlight that was shined on PIC by the Natural Start Alliance, an organization that promotes quality education for young children that includes regular opportunities to connect with nature and the local environment.
Natural Start Alliance asked me to describe how nature learning at PIC "helps increase access to high-quality early childhood education and school-age programs?"
"Our Nature Playground gives PIC children an opportunity to connect with nature in a way that many growing up in an urban environment don’t have. We are committed to families in our community who are unable to afford this level of care, and have increased the number of children who come to PIC free of charge through a state subsidy program."
Read the Parent Infant Center Member Spotlight on the Natural Start Alliance website.
Natural Start Alliance is affiliated with the North American Association for Environmental Education and is based in Washington, DC. Their Executive Director Emilian Geczi asked a series of questions for the spotlight piece and later commented " I'm so thrilled that we're able to share your story! I find it very inspiring and I think that so will many others."
I am very proud to see PIC recognized as a model for the type of outdoor experiences for children they work hard to promote.
Next steps in this budding relationship include my upcoming participation in their Nature-Based Early Learning Conference at the end of this month. As we move forward, we anticipate partnering on teacher professional development opportunities in order to share our approach to connecting children with nature with fellow educators in the field of early childhood.
These Mud Day photos celebrate the joyful learning that I see when children get outside and dig in.
How can you support your young one's experiences with nature? Here is a Parents Guide to Nature-Based Early Learning that will help you encourage nature play within your family.