Forest School  

The Athenaeum Learning Center's Forest School is a kindergarten and pre-kindergarten program designed for students from 4- 6 years old.  It is a 2 year pre-academic kindergarten program that emphasizes outdoor exploration and play, hands-on learning opportunities, nature education, and interpersonal growth.


Forest School students work on traditional kindergarten skills: letter and number recognition, pre-phonics instruction, hands-on science experiments, social studies lessons that emphasize community and personal awareness, art, music, physical education, and more.  One of our Forest School instructors is a native Mandarin Chinese speaker, and students spend part of each day in an immersion environment.

Once students show reading readiness, they begin to take daily phonics lessons to prepare them for 1st grade reading lessons.  We respect each child's individual development, and students only read and write when they're ready.

 Outdoor Education 

Our Outdoor Classroom contains about two acres of field and forest, and Forest School students spend most of their day outdoors.  The Forest Kindergarten offers ample time during the day to play, and teachers lead projects and activities throughout the day.

A typical day's schedule might look like:

A typical day's schedule might look like:

8:30-9:30: Morning work period (indoors)

9:30-10:00: Free play and snack (outdoors)

10:00-10:30: Recess (outdoors, with the older students)

10:30-12:00: Art, music, social studies, science experiments, gardening, and other organized activities and projects (outdoors)

12:00-1:00 Lunch (outdoors)

1:00-1:15: All-School Meeting

1:15-2:15: Rest Hour (indoors)

2:15-2:45: Afternoon Forest Session (outdoors)

2:45-3:00: Clean-Up 

 What is a Forest School? 

Forest Schools have been popular in Europe for many years, and are growing in popularity in the United States.  Ours is inspired by similar schools in the United Kingdom and Germany, as well as the traditional kindergarten program popularized in the 19th century, which emphasized gardening, outdoor activity, and a logical-thinking based curriculum designed to teach foundational math and reasoning skills.

 Our Staff 

Our Forest School is led by Miss Kira and Miss Di.  Both have taught in schools and preschools around the South Shore, and love leading children's activities outdoors. 

For more information about the Athenaeum Learning Center, and our forest school, please email us.