to Mar 9

Nature-based Preschool Business Planning Workshop: Helping your business take flight

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Our goal is to help your nature-based or forest preschool dream take flight. This two-day workshop (plus an evening) will not only help you get started, but also provide you the road map for accomplishing your vision. We will begin with an overview of the business planning process, then we will guide you on questions to ask and tools to answer those questions—all specific to the unique business needs of nature-based and forest preschools. We will provide specific guidance related to these topics:

  • Key decisions (e.g., mission, goals, administrative model, partnerships)

  • Programming plan (What will the program look and feel like?)

  • Site plan (How do I determine if a site is right for your business?)

  • Building plan (What does the ideal physical space look like and how can I achieve that vision?)

  • Marketing plan (Who is the target market? How do I reach them? How do I identify potential competition?)

  • Operating plan (How do I identify the nuts and bolts of my program such as schedule, registration process, insurance, etc.?)

  • Financial plan (How do I identify and track start-up and operating expenses?)

  • Risk analysis (What might go wrong in my business plan and how might I respond if it does?)

The workshop itself will be a mix of presentations and time to workshop and problem-solve in small groups. We will also visit Chippewa Nature Center’s Nature Preschool. All of these activities are designed to ensure you leave the workshop having made substantial progress on your business plan. Yes, you’ll leave with more work to do, but our goal is for you to leave with a clear road map of next steps to quickly and efficiently make your preschool a reality.  

Early bird registration (prior to January 31) is $395; Regular registration is $485. Registration will be limited to 15 participants to provide tailored support. Handouts, snacks, and lunch will be provided. To register, click here.

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2:00 PM14:00

Preschool Beyond Walls: Integrating Nature into the Preschool Classroom Webinar

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This edWebinar will help early childhood providers, no matter their situation, consider the principles fundamental to a nature-based approach and integrate those principles into teaching practice. These high-quality nature-based early childhood education (NbECE) practices don’t happen overnight, but rather occur through daily programmatic and teaching decisions. Using a continuum of NbECE as the overarching framework, Rachel Larimore will provide concrete ways to better integrate nature into your program structure, physical environment (inside and outside), and teacher-child interactions.

Attendees will leave the edWebinar with tangible ideas that can be implemented the next day as well as some ideas can be worked toward into the future. This presentation will be of interest to preK-3 teachers, librarians, and school and district leaders. There will be time for Rachel to answer questions at the end of the edWebinar.

This webinar is hosted by edWebinar. Click here to register.

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to Apr 13

Irvine Nature Center's Nature Preschool Conference

Rachel Larimore, Founder of Samara Early Learning, will be presenting the keynote, titled “Guided by the ‘Why?’—Making Intentional Decisions in the Nature-based Early Childhood Classroom” at Irvine Nature Center’s Nature Preschool Conference April 12-13, 2019 in Owing Mills, Maryland. She will also be presenting a concurrent session titled “Going to the Great ‘Beyond’.” Conference registration is required. Click here to register!

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to Jun 13

Nature Preschool Institute 2019


Samara Early Learning owner, Rachel Larimore, will once again be joining the staff of Chippewa Nature Center's Nature Preschool in facilitating this four-day workshop. The Institute allows preschool educators to see the teachers and students in action (three of the four mornings) while also learning about the philosophy and nature-based teaching practices. You'll walk away with the information and skills to incorporate nature-based concepts into daily preschool routines while maintaining the integrity of their best practice curriculum. Topics will include: 

  • Benefits of Nature Play

  • Real versus perceived outdoor risks

  • Naturalizing outdoor play areas

  • Integrating nature into indoor spaces

  • Seasonal activities to incorporate into the classroom

Details about registration will be posted soon. Subscribe to our mailing list to be notified of details.

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