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Our Educational Philosophy


We are a “success-oriented” school, striving to help children and their parents form positive self-concepts and good feelings of self-worth. We value the uniqueness of each child and adult involved. Nature's Pointe is a developmentally appropriate program with a cooperative philosophy, providing a learning environment for both parents and children.

The length and frequency of school days is in line with the recommendations of early childhood educators as appropriate for the age of the children. Teacher-led group time is balanced with plenty of self-directed, hands-on experiences. The latter have been shown to allow the natural learning processes of children to occur. In a pre-planned “learning through play” environment children learn how to interact, problem-solve, and make decisions together.  We also utilize our outside space frequently to allow learning through play with nature.

The Power of Play - Outside!

In the cooperative preschool, a focus is placed on developmentally appropriate learning through play strategies with an emphasis on cooperative play (as age appropriate) where two or more children learn how to interact, problem-solve, and make decisions together.

Children in cooperatively structure, learning through play environments exhibit higher levels of pro-social behavior (sharing, dramatic play, cooperation, positive interactions) than children in traditional-structured classrooms.

At Nature's Pointe we focus on outdoor play with our outdoor classroom environment.  Each class spends as much time outside as possible (rainy days are fun too!) and utilize our newly constructed playhouse.  We have an outdoor kitchen complete with dishes, mud and sink.  Our playground lends cooperative play outside with friends and nature alike.  As your child ages in Nature's Pointe they have more opportunities to explore the outside world.  Our Panda class takes regular hikes throughout the surrounding environment!

In pre-planned, “learning through play” environments:

Language skills are developed as children discuss issues of play with each other or discuss their drawing, paintings, craft projects, or experiments with adults and each other.

Math skills are practiced in the play “store”, “restaurant”, or “office” and through games, projects, blocks and other manipulatives.

Science is learned through natural curiosity and experiments with snow, dirt, sand, water, etc. in the sensory table or leaves, nest, insects, magnets, magnifying glasses, etc and picture books strategically placed on the science table and discussed through out the day

What is a certified Nature Explore classroom?

Each year we continue to improve and add on to the space. Our teachers attended Nature Explore workshops, and we discussed certification with our families and Board of Directors. We formed an Outdoor Classroom Committee and created designs and a master plan

In addition to the required areas, our outdoor classroom includes a large hill the children use for running, climbing, and sledding. We have an open grassy field, as well as a wooded area for the children to hike and explore. Our future plans include creating a pathway for the bicycles and wheeled toys, expanding the sandbox, and building a fort.

More info on Nature Explore certification here.

Play is Powerful

“It is paradoxical that many educators and parents still differentiate between a time for learning and a time for play without seeing the vital connection between them.”

-Leo F. Buscaglia

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