06 November, 2011

How I Bring Nature Inside the Classroom

I recently attended a Nature Explore workshop, at the beautiful Shaw Nature Reserve in St. Louis, Missouri.  The workshop was about documenting children's learning outdoors and how to bring nature indoors, to the classroom!

Here are photos of some of the ways I bring nature and natural elements indoors, to my classroom!

I cover my windows (which overlook the parking lot) with sheers.  They somewhat obscure the cars coming and going, allow the natural light to stream into the room, and also give a good view of the lovely trees and other greenery, beyond the parking lot.

I covered the bulletin board with natural burlap.

We observe, document, and make labels for creatures we bring in from the playground 

I store materials in natural felt bowls

We use natural materials in our art projects

Display natural objects

and use them for other purposes

I have added a bit of nature to our daily sign in sheet area

I added handmade tree blocks to our block area

Here they are in action, along with baskets of burr acorns, and small stones

Plants basking in filtered light add loveliness to this area

Pieces of birch wood may be shaped here, with rasps.  There are also pine cones and sweet gum "gumballs" for other projects.

Bamboo wind chimes make a lovely sound when the weather allows me to open the windows

Rainbow colored felt creatures fly from this grape vine wreath

And a stump outside the door serves as a welcome to our room

We sometimes sing songs by candlelight

And use babies made from all natural wool.  They smell so good!

How do you bring nature indoors?


  1. These photos of your room are beautiful!
    I'm inspired to bring more nature into our home. Though with one still at the eating things he shouldn't (and choking on them) stage, I've found it too difficult to have a nature table. But, we could have bigger stones, etc. And maybe we could make a nature mobile. I was also thinking it would be fun to make an herb wreath with the kids one day. Lots of inspiration in your photos and classroom!

  2. Lovely photos, Mother Nature sure is bountiful. cheers Marie

  3. I absolutely love this post! I just stumbled upon your blog via Pinterest, and I am excited to see what else you have on here. Gorgeous environment!


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