Mindstretchers opened the first outdoor Nature Kindergarten in Scotland in 2006 with the underlying philosophy of Claire Warden as defined in her book Nature Kindergartens. The enthusiastic implementation of the Nature Kindergarten philosophy has resulted in centres of excellence that are considered sector leading and recognized internationally.
The Nature Kindergartens offers the best of all worlds to allow children the opportunity to build great childhood memories - a secure natural space inside, a gently challenging outdoor investigative zone which supports young children to develop emotional confidence and skills, and then the wild wood where they can feel the freedom of a fully natural environment. Children from the age of 2 years spend the majority of the day outdoors in all weathers, either in the very naturalistic garden or in the woodlands where they build dens and bird hides using tools such as saws and loppers, make fires to cook their own snacks, climb trees and generally explore the wonders that the woodlands have to offer.
Above all we hope to share a positive attitude and enthusiasm for experiential learning.
Our Kindergarten aims to:
"Imagine a world where the lines were harsh and unyielding, the textures were consistent and variation is unheard of. Does it inspire you? Now imagine a place where the carpet changes every day, the ceiling is a myriad of different colours, light, shadow and movement. The feelings and movement completely surround you, sometimes breezy, sometimes cold, others warm. Unexpected wonders fly by, sometimes full of colour and sometimes full of noise and movement. If we really want children to thrive we need to let their connection to nature nurture them." (Nurture Through Nature, Claire Warden 2007)