While nature preschools are not a new concept, the first nature preschool in Southeast Minnesota opened at Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center in the fall of 2020. With the 2021-2022 preschool term in the books, Eagle Bluff is holding an open house on Saturday, July 9 from 9-11a.m. to invite more preschool parents and caregivers to learn about this exciting, innovative model of early childhood education. Enrollment for the 2022-2023 preschool term at Eagle Bluff is now open.
What exactly makes a preschool a “nature” preschool?
“Nature preschools have the same child development goals as other high-quality preschools, but the curriculum and teachers achieve these developmental goals through nature-centered experiences,” said Colleen Foehrenbacher, executive director at Eagle Bluff. “Our nature preschool is a fully licensed program with a school readiness curriculum. Children in this program spend an average of at least three hours a day outdoors, exploring our 80-acre campus, while building relationships and curiosity about the natural world.”
Foehrenbacher added that due to the generosity of Eagle Bluff donors and local area foundations, all outdoor gear needed, from rain suits, mittens, boots, snowsuits, hiking backpacks, and more are provided for the children to use each day.
With the July 9 open house, Eagle Bluff hopes to bring preschool parents and their kiddos to their campus for a couple hours to show them the benefits of nature-based early childhood education and to let the community know enrollment for the program is now open for the fall.
Parents and caregivers are invited to pre-register for the open house by visiting eaglebluffmn.org/preschool or using the contact information below. The open house will include a tour of Eagle Bluff’s preschool facility from 9-10 a.m., followed by outdoor story time and nature play from 10-11 a.m. Parents and caregivers who can’t make the open house but are interested in the program can contact Eagle Bluff at (507) 467-2437 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a private tour. Eagle Bluff’s campus is located at 28097 Goodview Drive, Lanesboro, Minn. 55949.