Please join us to support the next exciting Nature for All project at Woodend!
The Nature Play Space will offer unique activities that support the cognitive,
social and emotional development of young children of all abilities.
With the stream restoration and wheelchair-accessible nature trail complete, we are ready for the next exciting “Nature for All” project at Woodend. In the coming year we will build an accessible Nature Play Space adjacent to the main trailhead of the sanctuary, where accessible bathrooms and a water fountain have already been installed.
ANS has carefully designed this project to be accessible, engaging, and enriching for children of all abilities by working with early childhood and special educators, as well as physical and occupational therapists.
The Nature Play Space will use natural materials like logs, stone, and sand to offer unique activities that support the cognitive, social, and emotional development of all children. Research consistently shows multiple benefits of nature play for children including encouraging resiliency, focus, self-regulation, creativity, self- confidence, problem-solving, and social functioning.
Feature areas of the Nature Play Space will include an Engineering Zone with water, sand and loose parts; a Woodland Township with playhouses and fort building materials to inspire social and fantasy play; a log scramble Bird Nest for climbing, swinging and balancing; a Sensory Garden filled with the colors, smells and textures of native plants; and a 12-ft tall Wood Thrush that children can climb on, crawl through and slide down.
We will fill the spaces between these features with native shrubs and trees to welcome wildlife to join the fun.
The Nature Play Space will help us to build our community of nature stewards starting with the youngest naturalists. We hope it will encourage children and families to pursue a lifetime of nature learning opportunities.