Play and Learn was established in 1995 out of a growing need for an early education centre that was a small family atmosphere that provided real experiences when astroturf and plastic fantastic was becoming the norm.
Part of our philosophy has always been to take groups of children out and have real life experiences. We have always believed through having rich experiences, learning is more meaningful.
From early on walks around the local community – library, parks, shops, post box/office then with the purchase of a minivan we started exploring the wider community such as the Botanic Gardens, bush walks, Ambury Farm, the museum, local parks, grocery shopping, library (I think its important to note that we still went on walks several times a week) We also make use of public transport
As an extension of our trips we got interested in ‘forest schools’ and went over to Denmark to have a look at a few which was very insightful and was the catalyst for trips and later the centre at Clarks Beach
From there we were really committed to getting groups of children out into nature on a regular basis so we sent two teachers to the UK to become qualified forest school leaders. We wanted to ensure we were aligned with international best practices, current research and pedagogy and had all our safety systems in place. Since then we have developed our Nature Kindergarten programmes within our centres, through our home based service, standalone Nature Kindergarten services and Nature Playgroups.
With 20 years experience in taking groups out into the community we have a wealth of knowlege to share. In 2015 we began our Professional Development programmes. We believe that its really important that educators are knowlegeable in the outdoors with children and safety is a priority.