Frequently Asked Questions
Do you cancel class for bad weather?
“There’s no such things as bad weather, just bad clothing.” -Nature School Mantra
Here at WRNS we do believe that as long as your child is dressed appropriately for the day, they will enjoy themselves. We celebrate all weather Idaho has to offer, especially rain and snow; no puddle goes untouched or unexplored. With that in mind, the health and safety of our students is our first priority. We will follow the West Ada School District school cancellations if road conditions become too dangerous. Also, before class, we will access the weather conditions ourselves and if we feel it is unsafe to be outside for any reason (high winds, extreme cold, lightening, unsafe road conditions), we will cancel class and alert all parents in a timely manner.
Will my child be a good fit?
Everyone can benefit from more outside time year round. With that said, we encourage one and all to get outside more. However, a drop-off nature school program may not be a good fit for every child. There are many variables to consider...from parents being willing to smartly-dress their child year round, to a child having the ability to follow directions in a potentially hazardous setting. If you are unsure if this might be a good fit for your child, please contact us with your questions and concerns and we will give you our most educated judgement. We also offer a month trial before making a term commitment to assess if this is an experience your child is ready for.
Can I stay with my child?
We do have a class parents can attend for ages 6months-3 years old. For our preschool and kindergarten option they are drop off only. This is for the safety of our students as well as insurance-related coverage reasons. We do have volunteering options available. If you are interested, please see our enrollment form or reach out to us directly.
When does this program operate?
We are a year round program and our preschool/kindergarten options run concurrently with the traditional school year. Classes are broken down into the Fall, Winter, and Spring seasons. However, we recommend a child attend the entire school year, to yield the greatest benefits. We also offer summer camp options
What if my child gets cold?
We require all parents to dress their child in weather-appropriate clothing. This may include thermals, quality mid-layers, waterproof top and bottoms, snow gear, etc. We also require all students to bring an extra pair of clothes, socks and shoes to be placed in a gallon-sized ziplock bag in their backpacks. When dressed appropriately, children's bodies generate more than enough body heat.
What about safety/accidents?
The health and safety of all students is our number one priority. We spend time learning about our environment, what is safe and what isn’t. Our teachers are trained in either First Aid or Wilderness First Aid. Every teacher and teacher's aide will have a cell phone and first aid kit on hand at all times in case of an emergency or injury. Our teachers are vigilant and always closely watch each child and maintain a safe distance. If there is an accident of any kind, a full report will be taken with caregivers notified at the end of the day, or sooner if necessary. Due to the nature of our school, the children are given the instruction, space and time to practice real-life risk assessments, gain gross motor skills, body awareness and more understanding of their own physical limits. These factors alone decreases the risk of injury in our environment and sets a foundation for proprioception, long-term self-awareness and overall safety in the outdoors.