The "Forest Kindergarten"

I recently came across this new concept from Denmark called the “forest kindergarten”. What it literally means is getting the kids outdoors and allowing them tom play in the woods. Along with that is all the mud, clod, wet, dirt, bugs, and everything else that goes with nature.

Here is a video:Kids Gone Wild

Here are MORE LINKS.

Wow, kids climbing trees! Playing in the mud! Kids using knives! Kids around animals! Kids around a fire!

In the US such preschools and kindergartens are all centered around math, reading, and getting them ready for school. The kids only go outside when the weather is good and play areas are sterile with little grass or trees. Play equipment is as low to the ground and safe as possible. I used to work at one where the kids spent half the day watching television programs like Sesame street or movies.

I guess such schools are spreading to the US.

What do you all think? Could such schools be even allowed here?

My daughter’s preschool has a “woodland” playground. Lots of big trees (we’re in the Puget Sound area, so I mean *really *big), but scrupulously cleared of dangerous plants … or so I assume. The kids love it.

A few years ago a French movie called, iirc, *Babies *followed six or eight babies from different parts of the world through their first year of life. The kid in sub-Saharan Africa, who is basically allowed to dabble in the mud with other babies all day, is by far the most intelligent at a year old. How that translates into skills for a modern society is another question, and whether just letting kids play in the woods for a few hours is enough to produce that kind of intelligence is another.

I had free range kids before it was a thing. :cool:

My daughter’s school does this. One day each week, they have class outside all day. She loves it.

Sattua and Smeghead. Do they allow the kids to climb trees that high, make a fire, work with knives, and be that close to creeks and rivers?

No. It’s just trees and underbrush.

No. They mainly just talk about numbers and letters. Kindergarten stuff.

I went to a Waldorf school (Rudolf Steiner in every other country) for a couple years. We weren’t supposed to climb trees (we did anyway), but the rest of that was fine if supervised. This was early elementary school though, not 3-5 year olds.

Never mind kindergarten; I want to do that now.

As much as I like the concept I dont see how it would be practical when it comes to space. You would need I’d guess about 3-4 acres of forest for this plus still have land for a building and such. You could go visit local parks but then your dealing with the public.

I can’t find it. But there is a no classroom school in or near the Olympic National Park in Washington State. I read about it a while back. Kids are outdoors everyday, and they voted on rain days (and it rains a LOT as in 15 feet per year, and they only stayed under shelter once or twice a year). Anyway, it sounded really cool. Unfortunately my search fu has failed me.

They have a similar thing here in Australia called Bush Kinder - there’s at least 3 in my local area. Seems to be based on the European Forest Kinder programs.