At Nature Kids School Holiday Programme kids learn through discovery, connecting with and experiencing the natural world.
Nature Kids explore, are curious, ask and answer questions, engage all their senses, are creative and playful. Through experience they develop their understanding of the natural world, living things, themselves and each other.
So, what actually happens at the Nature Kids School Holiday Programme?!
Our small group sessions run from 9 am till 3 pm most days during the school holidays were outdoors connecting with nature all day.
Our Nature Base is always in one of the Mount or Tauranga's beautiful parks, reserves or beaches. Our shelter or classroom caravan is our base.
Our day's start by getting to know each other, we choose a Nature Name for the day (often linked to our daily theme). It's fun if it rhymes or starts with the same letter as our own name. So, I've been Kathy Kowhai, Kokako, Kekeno just to name a few. We use our nature names for a game and throughout the day.
All Nature Kids receive their own Nature Journal to use during the day and to take home. The kids love writing, drawing, and pressing found bits of nature in their journals. We write an entry at the beginning of each session, including our daily focus and our kaupapa (principals, or biz) which are always Caring and Curious!
Nature Kids are encouraged to be caring and curious, and we talk about what this means. The kids come up with all sorts of incredible ideas, but the main theme is that we are caring for each other and nature (and how/why). And that we curious about nature and each other (we are all different and that's a good thing).
Next, it is an Awaken exercise designed to get the kids excited (this doesn't take much). A favourite is Hide and Sneak, Pekapeak and Puriri, or Tahirimatea and Tane, there are so many fun ways to awaken our connection to nature.
After our morning kai we head off from our base adventuring, the focus for this is always different depending on the daily theme. For example we could be going on a Rockpool Ramble, being Bird Nerds, or even creating Stick Shelters. There are SO many experiences to be had and each day at Nature Kids has a different focus or theme. And, each day brings something new because nature always has something magic to share with us.
We usually eat our lunch up (or under) a tree. There is something really special about eating outside, especially in a tree - food just tastes SO much yummier and we are always SO hungry from our adventures.
Our time is spent exploring, creating, writing, drawing, playing and adventuring based on our theme for the day. There are specific experiences and activities planned, but it is also child-led, so often the kids take the learning and adventuring in a different direction which is wonderful!
The Nature Kids LOVE creating nature art, it could be drawing, designing nature mandalas or sculptures, making mud faces, or nature wands, and SO much more.
Our days are fun, fascinating and full!
I absolutely love seeing the Nature Kids connecting, learning and exploring in nature where they learn in a holistic and meaningful way, often without even knowing it. I also love seeing their natural curiosity come alive and their confidence soar. Nature time is one of the BEST things you can give your kids to help them grow and thrive. And Nature needs our kids to know and care too.
To find out more about Nature Kids School Holiday Programme click HERE