Welcome to our website
Learn more about what we do
Frequently Asked Questions
What primary services do you offer?
Nature-immersion half-day program for kids 4 - 8 years old!
What do you specialize in?
We specialize in inquiry- and play-based learner-led learning. That means we let children direct the learning, which happens primarily through play, and modeling. We ask questions to spark and deepen curiosity, and create activities based on what the children have shown interest in. Often times those activities are even optional; they only happen after a teacher has started something on their own and the children join in because they're interested. This even includes our suite of nature-connection skills. Learn more about them in Our Program.
Does LNCS provide snack and lunch?
No. Not yet at least. This is something we are considering, and will be collecting feedback on once programs are running. When that changes, we will let you know. In the meantime, if you are worried about what or how to provide for snack or lunch, we have a whole section on that in our handbook, which you will receive once you have enrolled. There are also sliding-scale and scholarships, so if lunch and snack prove to be an additional barrier for your family, please don't hesitate to reach out about those opportunities. You can find all this information plus lots more in our Handbook in the Whirlie Portal.
Are you a forest-preschool or nature kindergarten?
We closely follow the philosophy of forest-schools and nature-based programs. Kellianne is in fact a certified nature-based teacher with a graduate degree in early childhood education, but officially, we are not a school, preschool, or kindergarten.
Are you licensed and insured?
Yes we are insured, nose to tail. However we are not a licensed or accredited program. Primarily because we are not a child-care center or institution, we don't have a building, and that creates a lot of licensing hiccups. Since we are outside all year in all weather, we are a recreational skills-based educational service. That's a mouthful! But it's true, that's what we are. While we follow a lot of child-care protocols because they're useful and we're used to them, a lot of the licensing requirements revolve around risks of indoor care-giving, zoning and building safety, none of which apply to us. BUT! Because we like to comply with licensing regulations, we like to let you know that we ARE NOT licensed, and that we've made a pathway for filing anonymous-or not-complaints, feedback, or grievances, along with opportunities for following up on those things, for parents or guardians of participants in LNCS programming. You can find these forms in Feedback.
What are your class rates?
Our base rates are $495 per four-week session. There are some variations on this base rate, and you can find out more about that in Pricing our Program.
I see there are different prices listed. Can you explain why?
Yes! First, we have multiple enrollment choices for each four-week session; you can enroll your child for once or twice a week, on different days of the week. (You can even sign-up for multiple groups per session!) Secondly, we provide payment options for different financial circumstances. Our middle choice is our base rate, the next highest rate is for families who want to contribute to our sliding-scale mutual-aid fund, and the unmarked choice is for those who would like to sign-up for a sliding-scale consultation, where we together figure out a price that works for your family.
Will my child need a lot of....stuff?
It can feel like a lot of things, especially in the colder months. But luckily, we've prepared lists (we love lists, we hope you love lists) in the handbook, which you will receive when you enroll. Generally it goes like this: always make sure to have weather-appropriate clothing (there's the doozy...check out the handbook or our Tips & Tools) plus plenty of water, snack and lunch, sunscreen, two bandanas, a second change of weather-appropriate clothes, and proper footwear. Plus a few extras that we will provide come you kiddo's first day: a forest notebook and pencil, a forest-mat, and an adventure check-list (we told you we like lists!). You can find all this information plus lots more in our Handbook in the Whirlie Portal.
How old does my child need to be to attend?
Your child needs to be 4 by the time they are enrolled, although if their birthday lands in the middle of a session, do enroll! We love celebrating birthdays! While our program is for 4 - 8 year olds exclusively, we are working on adding a few openings for older children who are interested in mentor-like roles in our group. When that happens, we will be sure to announce it!
How does your calendar work?
We mostly follow the public school SAU-29 calendar, although our breaks are a little longer and we go into the summer. Our sessions are four-weeks long, and so cycle every four weeks except where we have holiday breaks which tend to be about two weeks long, except for when we hibernate in winter. That break is much longer, and we get up to other things during that time. I you want to know what kind of activities we're doing then (besides hot chocolate ad hibernating) stay engaged with our social media or check our News & Updates occasionally.