Go Into Nature After School Programs

  • Small group. Grades K-5
  • Experienced teacher and certified Ecotherapist: see below*
  • UVA Madison House volunteers
  • Good old-fashioned fun and adventure: hiking, fort building, exploring. Environmental Art.
  • Deep connection with nature through games and awareness activities
  • Caring for each other and our planet

What we do:
Eco-Art Class (NEW!) Inspired by Environmental artists such as Andy Goldsworthy, we go into the woods on the school property and create art, using only the fallen natural materials we find. We find photos in environmental art books and video to inspire us and to learn. Forest Camp: Example of a session: Sensory based exercise: quiet & listen to birds. Morning meeting style circle time: what animal are you today? Imitate & guess. Nature connection game: "sneaky fox" one closed eye child tries to hear the sneaky foxes take the "chicken"/water bottle. Unstructured play with student initiated ideas for building forts, fairy towns, balancing on logs, exploring bugs under rocks, creating pretend worlds. Art: create a nature mobile. Gratitude: find a special tree, hug or put hands on it and thank it.
Why this is important for your child:
The consequences of decreased time in nature, especially for kids, have been documented by journalist Richard Louv, who coined the term Nature Deficit Disorder in his book Last Child in the Woods. Though not meant to be a medical diagnosis, Nature Deficit Disorder describes the increase of anxiety, inability to focus and other problematic childhood behavior he argues is associated with insufficient time outdoors. 
Who teaches:
Beverly is a certified Virginia teacher, and has been an ESOL teacher in ACPS Schools since 2001. In 2015 she founded Go Into Nature to bring her passion for nature connection to children and adults. She is a certified Ecotherapist, and a Wilderness Medic. She has been running Nature programs throughout the school year through the ACPS EDEP program since 2015, and offers her popular programs to families at 6 Elementary Schools. She believes in student led learning and the power of creative imagination. UVA volunteers assist in each course. See this link for an interview with Beverly on the importance of imaginative nature play for children's development.  
How and when do I sign up: Space is limited and check must be received to signup. Checks are made out to EDEP. Price $90 for each series of 5 90 minute sessions, with a discount of $165 if you sign up for both classes in the series. 10% discount for a sibling.
Parents see the fun through weekly photos in a private share link and are welcome to come see what their kids are doing any time!

 

Programs are at Meriwether Lewis Tuesdays, Hollymead Wednesdays, and Crozet elementary Thursdays for the September- october Series. We will be at other ACPS schools for the Oct- Dec and Spring Series'.

If you are interested in bringing this program to your school please contact me at beverlykentingram@gmail.com