What if it rains?

Awesome! Who doesn't love puddles and the wildlife that comes out in the rain? We will be out in all types of weather, so please ensure your child is prepared for warm, cool, cold, wet or dry days. But we do have a cozy building to call our own if we need to warm up, cool down, dry off, or decide to do some indoor learning if the weather is severe.

What about the bugs?

The spring time can bring the lovely misquotes and black flies out in the masses sometimes! But with a little preparation we can co-exist with these critters. Environmentally (and people!) friendly bug spray is encouraged, as are bug hats and/or coats/pants.

Is lunch provided?

Yes! Lunch is included in the $50/day price. Children are welcome to bring their own litter-less, nut free lunch if they wish. Though the cost remains the same.

We require all children to bring two snacks for the day, and a water bottle.
 

Who are the educators?

Our program is led by a forest school practitioner and certified teacher, and is supported by qualified outdoor educators, with certifications including early childhood education, child & youth studies, wilderness first aid, and others. All staff hold qualifications in Standard First Aid & CPR-C and have obtained a valid criminal reference check. Our staff to child ratio is 1:6.

What do you do about washroom breaks when you’re in the woods?

While near our program building at our main site, there are washroom facilities with potable running water available for washroom breaks, and handwashing. Participants are also taught how to ‘go to the washroom’ while out in the woods. Hand sanitizer is available for disinfecting hands in these situations. 

What should we pack?

"There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing” - we live by this adage at Forest School! Please ensure you always pack a backpack, water bottle, two snacks and a change of clothes. 

For more details, see the following links for a packing list, based on the appropriate season.

SPRING/FALL PACKING LIST
WINTER PACKING LIST


Note that there is no need to invest in expensive or top of the line equipment, though true waterproofing is important, rather than just "water resistance." 

What does a typical day look like?

Wanakita Forest School is nature- and inquiry-based, which means we take the children’s lead on what they want to learn about in the outdoors.  Interests, exploration, discovery and curiosity drive the day to day content of the program, but we have some structure to ensure we have routine and that our general learning goals are being met. 

8:45-9:00      Drop off and free play 
Morning       Morning connection circle and inquiry topic discussion (what do we want to explore?) 
                       Forest explore on trails  
                       Snack  & free play (please bring your own, nut-free)
                       Sit spots
                       Creative time: crafts, books, song/music, drama  
11:45             Lunch (provided)
Afternoon    Skills development & knowledge building: shelter building, knots, ecology (tree & plant ID, animal tracking), reading, writing, outdoor math, maps, Indigenous learning 
                       Snack & free play (please bring your own, nut-free)
                       Passion projects (student-driven) or program projects (betterment of our program areas, such as weeding gardens, clearing brush, small construction projects, improving our building space, developing play areas etc.) 
                       Closing circle 
4:30               Pick up/home time