A fully licensed preschool offering nature-based learning at the Fairbanks Museum for children ages 3 to 5
We believe children are born with a desire to explore and understand the natural world, and that early experiences with nature set a precedent for lifelong learning and well-being.
We provide children with special nature-centered opportunities to learn about themselves, the world, life, and our curriculum respons to students' interests. We offer students a range of "real" materials--water, soil, rocks, plants, snow. Balch children learn by doing; they play in the mud, climb on logs, follow insects, and plant seeds.
The Balch Nature School at the Fairbanks Museum is committed to supporting and building on the child's innate interest in exploring the natural world.
Dana Karuza (right), is Balch's lead teacher and director. "Miss Dana" lives in St. Johnsbury with her husband, and has two grown boys. Dana's urban homestead has sizable gardens, chickens, 2 cats, and a dog. Dana holds a BS degree in Resource Conservation from the University of Montana, with an emphasis in Environmental Education. She has most recently worked as director of children's programs at Wonder & Wisdom in Greensboro, Vt. For 10 years, Dana and her husband managed a conservation district's working educational farm and environmental education center in IL.
Rachel Levesque, assistant teacher, graduated from the University of Connecticut with a BS in Human Development and Family Studies and earned her Master of Education in Elementary Education from Springfield College. "Miss Rachel," a licensed educator, worked as a Head Start Center Manager and preschool teacher in Wiscasset, Maine. Rachel has led the Nature Buddies Playgroup at the Fairbanks Museum. Rachel and her husband live in St. Johnsbury with their two sons.
For more about the Balch Nature School, click here.
For a 2014/15 Nature School application, click here.