Nature-Based Education

“Youth should dwell in a land of health, amid fair sights and sounds, and receive good in everything, and beauty, the effluence of fair works, shall flow into the eye and ear like a health giving breeze to draw the soul to the beauty of reason.” – Plato

The Novato Charter School recognizes that nature serves as a common ground for all cultures. Observation and acknowledgement of our natural environment allows us to more fully celebrate our similarities and appreciate our differences. The natural world is acknowledged and celebrated in a variety of ways so that children may develop reverence and a sense of stewardship for the earth and all of its inhabitants.

School festivals are opportunities to participate in multiculturally based celebrations of the changing seasons. Along with the observance of the rhythm of the seasons, rhythm in daily life promotes understanding of our relationship with the Earth, sun, and moon. Through song, verse, language, and classroom activities, children’s senses awaken to the excitement of the natural world around them.

Meals and snacks prepared in the classroom provide additional opportunities to acknowledge our appreciation for the natural world. These meals and snacks offer wholesome organic ingredients which encourage mindful and healthy eating habits. Families are encouraged to place importance on good nutrition. Parents are also encouraged to provide lunch containers that are reusable or recyclable and are void of media/commercial images.

Toys for the younger classes consist primarily of wood and natural fibers. Items such as rocks, sticks, pinecones, silks, and beeswax are utilized to further encourage imaginative play and connection with the earth.

The children learn about life cycles and the seasons through planting and gardening. They are able to eat what is grown in the garden and compost scraps from the garden and from school meals. Our recycling program teaches children about the preciousness of the resources that are utilized each and every day. The school uses environmentally sound products whenever and wherever possible.

Read an article by the Center for Ecoliteracy about the school’s exemplary environmental education.

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Please read more about our Philosophy:

Organization and Structure School Environment

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