Cumming Nature Center Forest School

Cumming Nature Center Forest School

Forest School recognizes the intrinsic relationship between children and nature. Our mission is to provide children with the space to nurture this relationship through unstructured play, curiosity-driven exploratory learning, hands-on projects and outdoor skills development, all within a physically safe and emotionally supportive environment. Through forest school, students learn to be resilient, self-reliant and confidently inquisitive.

 

Nature is our classroom

With nature as our classroom, guide and companion our daily activities are based on fostering three things: purposeful work, observation, and exploration. Purposeful work may consist of carving sticks, sawing wood, gathering acorns, building a shelter, building and cooking on a fire, creating natural art–the list is endless!

We take time to observe the little ways the world changes, even in the course of a week. Outdoor play allows the children to honor the strong developmental need to jump, twist, tug, pull, balance, roll, run, climb, dig, sort, build, weave and create. This play also develops fine and gross motor skills, executive function, spatial awareness, balance, coordination, kindness, and empathy. Children work together, using their strong imaginations and ideas to sort out all types of social situations.

 

Preparedness is important

Each day is spent entirely outdoors in all types of weather. In order to fully immerse ourselves in the environment, it is essential that children come prepared for the day’s weather and with the understanding that it is ok to get dirty! Comfort and proper clothing are of utmost importance. 

 

We aim to inspire

Cumming Nature Center is a dynamic, 900-acre environmental education facility that celebrates the unique landscape and culture of the Finger Lakes region through experiential learning opportunities and thoughtful exhibits. Educational programming at CNC explores the complex relationship between humans and the natural world. These programs are designed to inspire innovative and creative thinking among participants and provide them with the tools, knowledge, and confidence to take action in the face of local, regional and global challenges.


Forest School Parent Handbook 

It is critical that families review the parent handbook before registering a child for forest school. The handbook provides detailed information about forest school's core values and guiding principles, along with logistical details regarding food, clothing, weather closures, registration and more. Please take time to read through the handbook, and feel free to reach out to our staff with any questions at 585.374.6160.

 

Download Handbook

 


Get Started with Forest School

Forest School is for ages 4 to 12 and all class days run from 10am–3:30pm.

Register online below or call 585.374.6160.

Spring Semester

Summer Semester

Summer Immersion Weeks

 

Spring Semester

Quarter 4:

    • Thursday Group: March 15–May 24 (Excluding March 29 and April 5)
    • Friday Group: March 16–May 25 (Excluding March 30 and April 6)

   RMSC Member   Non-Member   
1st Child  $290 $320
2nd Child $270 $300
3rd Child $250 $280

 

Register: Q4 Spring Thursdays

Register: Q4 Spring Fridays

  

Summer Semester

Summer Forest School includes eight Friday sessions: June 8, 15, 22, 29; July 6, 13; and August 3, 10. Please note that there is no overlap between weekly and immersion camps.

   RMSC Member   Non-Member   
1st Child  $239.70 $255
2nd Child $226.95 $242.25
3rd Child $214.20 $229.50

 

Register: Summer Fridays

 

Summer Immersion Weeks

Our Forest School Immersion Camps condense the semester-long curriculum into week-long day camps. With nature as our classroom, guide and companion, our daily activities are based on fostering three things: purposeful work, observation, and exploration.

 

Wildcraft Camp

Monday, July 30–Friday, Aug. 3 | 9am–3pm | Ages 8–13

Come experience the art and science of wildcrafting! We will discover wild edibles, natural dyes, nature weaving, cobb sculpture, tinctures and salves, and so much more! Join in on the spirit of creativity while learning about the timeless connections between humans and the natural world. Participants will be invited to keep a nature journal and sketchbook to record observations, recipes, thoughts, botanical knowledge and general impressions of the experience. Dress for for a full day of outdoor hiking, exploration, and creative play. Pack a lunch, snack, water bottle, and your curiosity!

Register

 


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