Bush kinder – an introduction

Playing in nature can benefit children's wellbeing, foster social-emotional growth and boost skill development.

Program details

  • Priority area: Wellbeing (social and emotional), access and inclusion
  • Primary audience: Educators
  • Delivery mode: Group training, online, consultancy, coaching
  • Strength of evidence: Level 4 – Emerging research evidence
  • AEDC sub-domains:
    • Emotional maturity – anxious and fearful behaviour
    • Emotional maturity – aggressive behaviour
    • Emotional maturity – hyperactivity and inattentive behaviour
    • Social competence – responsibility and respect
  • Item cost: Moderate ($200–$2,000 per person/item)

Program description

Research shows that playing in nature benefits children’s wellbeing, social and emotional development, cognitive language and physical skill development.

Participants in this training session:

  • observe a bush kinder session either on-site or on-line using video footage
  • examine the research and practicalities of implementation with an experienced early childhood consultant and bush kinder educators
  • are equipped to explain and share the benefits of nature play with parents/carers and the community and consider necessary regulations and policies to implement in context of park, beach or bush.

The provider, Early Life Foundations, can customise sessions and provide follow-up support for initiating, developing or enhancing current programs. To maximise effectiveness, the provider recommends booking coaching sessions for dates after the professional development has been attended.

Dates for scheduled 2024 sessions

  • 28 February 2024, 9.30am–12.30pm
  • 3 May 2024, 8.30am–3.30pm (on-site)
  • 13 June 2024, 9.30am–12.30pm
  • 14 August 2024, 9.30am–12.30pm
  • 5 September 2024, 8.30am–3.30pm (on-site)
  • 17 October 2024, 9.30am–12.30pm
  • 8 November 2024 8.30am–3.30pm (on-site)

Customised sessions

Contact the provider to discuss options and pricing.

Detailed cost

  • Half day online sessions: $320 (excluding GST) per person, includes digital workbook, sample of risk/benefit analysis forms, virtual tour and Fire Lab videos and Q&A with an early childhood consultant, experienced in running Bush Kinder programs and a Nature Learning expert. A 10% discount is available for 3 registrations or more
  • Full day on-site session: $370 (excluding GST) per person, includes morning tea and lunch
  • Coaching (optional): $1,995 (excluding GST). For groups of 20 or more, please contact the provider

Implementation considerations

  • Target population: educators.
  • Program/practice descriptions and details: online session includes digital workbook, sample of risk/benefit analysis forms, virtual tour and Fire Lab videos and Q&A with an early childhood consultant, experienced in running Bush Kinder programs and a Nature Learning expert. On-site session includes session notes and risk/benefit analysis forms.
  • Staffing: consider backfill and travel/accommodation costs if attending on-site session. Consider half day backfill for on-line session if required.
  • Training requirements: online sessions require stable internet connection and access to laptop or desktop computer.
  • Supervision/coaching: additional coaching packages available for attendees (optional). Three one-hour blocks for individuals or small teams (delivered via zoom or phone call). This customised coaching will provide educators with tailored support to build on the skills and strategies outlined in the presentation and encourage reflection and development of practice.

VEYLDF alignment

Item uses these practice principles

  • Partnerships with families
  • High expectations for every child
  • Respectful relationships and responsive engagement
  • Equity and diversity, Integrated teaching and learning approaches

Item responds to these sub-outcomes

Children become strong in their social, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.

Updated