First nature based preschool to open in tri-state - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

First nature based preschool to open in tri-state

The Cincinnati Nature Center is hosting a building dedication of the new Alpaugh Early Education Center in Milford, which will serve as a fully licensed, nature-based preschool for children ages 3-5. The dedication will take place on Sunday June 10th at 3:00 pm followed by an open house at their Rowe Woods location in Milford, Ohio. This building will open fully in this September.

This is the first preschool to be located and managed by a nature center in the greater Cincinnati area. The program's goal is to meet the developmental needs of the whole child by initiating a life-long, meaningful relationship with the natural world.

Connie O'Connor, CNC's Director of Education explained, "The program's emphasis will be on bridging the gap between the 'nature of the child' and the 'child in nature' by providing daily experiences in the diverse natural world of Rowe Woods." She added, "Research indicates that direct experience in nature is critical in meeting the social, physical, emotional, and cognitive needs of children. Our curriculum is based on Ohio Early Learning Content Standards and on developmentally appropriate practices. Children will focus on all of the skills that parents expect in a preschool: Math, Science, Language development, Music, Art, Dramatic play, and large and fine motor skills, but children will experience the added benefits that only time in nature can provide."

Curriculum will be inquiry-based and student driven. Children will learn by active hands-on exploration of their environment. Tisha Luthy, Early Childhood Director says, "The teachers will provide an environment that encourages discovery, experimentation, and the opportunity to see the results of one's actions. The student/teacher ratio of 8/1 will ensure a safe and personal learning experience for our young students."

All enrolled families will receive a free yearly membership to CNC. Registrations for September 2012 are currently being accepted. Parents with preschool-aged children are encouraged to attend the open house on June 10 to receive additional information on the preschool, and to meet Tisha Luthy. For questions, or to schedule a one-on-one meeting, contact Tisha at: 513-965-3340 or tluthy@cincynature.org.

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