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C&NN Natural Teachers Network


C&NN Natural Teachers Network

Welcome to the virtual gathering place of the Natural Teachers Network. A Natural Teacher is any educator who uses the natural world as a powerful learning environment—whether the subject is biology, writing, art, or any other.

Website: http://www.naturalteachers.org
Members: 368
Latest Activity: yesterday

Every teacher can be a Natural Teacher.

Think of this forum as a break room full of your peers ready for a conversation, a place where you can share ideas and ask for suggestions, where you can be engaged, creative, and encouraged. The subject: How to use the natural world as a classroom to improve your students’ health and well-being, including cognitive ability and attitudes toward learning. The objective: Inspire action, individually or in groups.

Like any meeting place where diverse opinions and concerns are shared, the discourse here must be civil. For further guidance on the “rules of engagement,” please see a set of Frequently Asked Questions located at http://childrenandnature.ning.com/page/frequently-asked-questions.
The goal of the Natural Teachers Network and this website is to encourage more teachers to connect their students with nature and to provide a forum where Natural Teachers can share their knowledge and views. Collectively, Natural Teachers can have a profound impact on improving the lives of children, and, in some schools and communities, that is already happening.

Please participate actively, and encourage others to join. Get together face-to-face as well.

You'll find tools and resources on the Natural Teachers Network home pages and throughout the larger Children & Nature Network website.

The Children & Nature Network Leadership Team will monitor this NTN Group web site from time to time, to respond to ideas and encourage action. Thank you for your commitment to children.

Discussion Forum

Infants and toddlers in nature 2 Replies

Hello. I am a 5 star  licensed family child care home provider in NC. I believe in letting even the youngest child explore nature. Infants and toddlers learn through their senses and nature is such a…Continue

Started by Vanessa Taylor Gilliam. Last reply by Vanessa Taylor Gilliam Jan 6.

Music and the outdoors 7 Replies

I'm wondering if  you know of any resources connecting music to  the outdoors ?Continue

Started by Kari. Last reply by Vanessa Taylor Gilliam Jan 6.

printable kiosk materials

Hello, All.I am searching for printable enviro ed materials geared towards the general public, for posting in a series of information kiosks.  Specifically, 1 or 2 pagers--containing seasonal…Continue

Started by Eric gehring Dec 23, 2014.

Children's and Teen Health Summit

Our very own Cheryl Charles will be presenting at the ONLINE Chiildren and Teen Health Summit that begins Monday, November 3rd! The event is online, and  you can listen whenever you want during that…Continue

Started by Carla Atherton Oct 31, 2014.

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of C&NN Natural Teachers Network to add comments!

Comment by Dwain Wilson yesterday

Susie, If you end up going down the nonprofit route, you should check out CommunityPartners.org.  They're a fiscal sponsor organization with over 140 projects (our group is one).  They're based in Los Angeles, but just learned that they have projects in Brooklyn, so that could be one answer.

Another would be to find an existing organization willing to give your program idea a home.

However, being someone who (16 years ago) did exactly what you're trying to do, please ponder my unsolicited advice and see if there's anyone with whom to partner so you aren't recreating the wheel.

If such doesn't exist in your community... then welcome to the founder's club.

Comment by Susie yesterday

Thanks Karen!!!!

Comment by Karan Barber yesterday

Try Guidestar.org and http://www.irs.gov/Charities-&-Non-Profits

Also great information for after school programs http://www.afterschoolalliance.org/

Also Check out http://www.naaee.net/ or your state environmental education organization.

GREAT idea & Good luck!

Comment by Susie yesterday

Hi there!  I am a teacher in NYC and I am interested in starting an after school program connecting children to nature- basically primitive skills, nature games, sit spot, etc... I am thinking I probably have to start a nonprofit, but I have no idea where to begin- any suggestions?  

Comment by Geoffrey McMullan on January 19, 2015 at 4:31am

Here is a game I use with children you can have hours of fun with this: /Free%20Game%20Pick%20a%20Colour.pdf

You will find more resources with this link: http://aq.be/37b5c8

Best wishes


Comment by Michael D. Barton on January 6, 2015 at 7:55pm

Passionate about connecting kids to nature? Please share my Tee Spring t-shirt campaign to help raise awareness about the importance of children playing in nature. If interested in ordering a t-shirt or sharing the link on your Facebook page, here's the link: http://teespring.com/natureplaysign

Thank you! - Michael Barton

Comment by Louise E Edsall on January 6, 2015 at 7:27pm

Hi I am an environmental educator that has taken my hobby and passion for honeybees to work with Sweet Virginia Foundation to bring the world of the honeybees into the classrooms of our kids. We also offer a real beekeeper experience at our flower farm and honeybee sanctuary for the kids. We teach them all about the honeybee biology, hive dynamics, pollination role, honeybee conservation and planting bee-friendly gardens.  It is wonderful to be among so many like-minded teachers.

Comment by Lia Grippo on November 30, 2014 at 3:06pm

Dear friends,

After 23 years in the field and 16 years tending a forest kindergarten, allow me to present the Academy of Forest Kindergarten Teacher Training. With a combined 60+ years of experience, Kelly Villarruell, Erin Boheme, and I offer in-depth and experiential training in nature connection, woodland skills, and the art of mentoring in the context of early childhood development. Check it out. Offer feedback. Spread the word.

In gratitude,

Lia Grippo

Founder/ Lead TeacherWild Roots Forest School

Comment by Gerhardus John van der Merwe on October 29, 2014 at 5:29pm

Nice to meet you. John here. I started a children's club as an educational tool to help kids reconnect with their natural roots here in southern Japan. (CUBS children's club). I teach a variety of things to kids in the club, but nature is the best teacher by far and is the main focus of our studies. As far as I know this is the first children's club in this prefecture (Oita) and most probably the only one in the southern part of Japan! The club's structure is based on the natural hierarchy of wolves. Children enter the club as omega wolves and work their way up to alpha. (Junior members must learn to respect the older members. At the same time the senior members must realize their responsibility in leading the younger ones.) In Japan kids are suppressed by a dead educational system that severly stunts their physical and mental growth. I am implementing a variety of activities and studies in the children's club to help kids overcome some of the problems they face each day. I know I can keep in touch with people here who want the best for their children's future.

Comment by Kris Antonius on October 14, 2014 at 7:43pm

Hi all,

Excited to be here and connect. I already see so many amazing projects and people! My thing is creating resources for teachers and homeschooling parents to get their kids learning in and about nature. You can check out my site at http://tinypeasant.com/ 


Members (367)


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