Focus on environment at the Forest School

In today’s modern electronically focused age, it’s getting harder and harder for kids to get a healthy dose of outside time. A new all-outdoors program through a local preschool aims to combat the new term “Nature Deficit Disorder” and get kids outside.

The play-based Fort Langley Happy Hours Preschool is bringing Forest School to the community, beginning in September with sessions from 9:15 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays and Thursdays in a variety of locations. Most of the time, Forest School will be in the Willoughby, Walnut Grove, and Fort Langley areas.

One of the parents at Happy Hours said the new program is ideal for her son.

“I think this program will be a great fit for my son. He’s active, and learns through doing and I believe he will excel in this environment,” said parent Jami Savage.

The need for more outside play has been a hot topic as of late and Zuri Scrivens, founding member of Happy Hours Preschool, identified the opportunity to reconnect children with the environment.

 â€œGetting outside is essential to who we are as human beings, physically and mentally, yet today’s children are spending so little time outside,” said Scrivens. “The increasing trend towards a more tech-connected world and my desire for a stronger connection to the environment for my son are what planted the seeds to create the first Forest School in Langley.”

The Forest School curriculum will be largely child-directed and play-based to allow for hands-on experiences with nature. Students will be encouraged to interact with each other while exploring, creating, and learning through nature’s eyes.

“There are limitless opportunities here to enrich the preschool experience for our kids in a truly down to earth kind of way. This school will fill the gap in our culture that has disconnected us from our outside world while also creating something new and exciting in our community,” said Sherri Thorpe, president of Happy Hours Preschool.

Forest School is the first outdoor preschool in the Fraser Valley. 

Find out more about this alternative preschool option at www.happyhourspreschool.bc.ca or by calling 604-888-8555.

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