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Program Basics

We are a fully-licensed, 5-STAR accredited program that provides nature-based learning for children ages 3-5.

We spend time outdoors each day! Our center is the Balch Nature School indoor/outdoor space at the Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium in St. Johnsbury, where we are priviledged to share in all of the knowledge and materials of this Vermont treasure. We'll plan a few local field trips to learn more about the fields, forests, wetlands and farms in our area.

We offer a distinctive preschool program experience in that children have daily interactions with nature and witness seasonal changes.  Children work with natural materials such as sand, water, clay, sticks, seeds, and plants, and have access to the wealth of resources the Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium offers through its facility and educational programs.

It is recommended that students be fully toilet trained for this drop-off program.

Some highlights of our approach:

  • We foster close relationships. The maximum class size is 14 students, so every student gets guidance and attention from our teachers.
  • Flexible enrollment options allow you to select the days that meet your schedule and align with your child's developmental pace. We offer 2, 3, 4, or 5 days/week enrollment options.
  • Nature-based learning is our key. Our program uses hands-on experiences along with thematic units that relate to the seasons to present age-appropriate science concepts.  The Vermont Early Learning Standards (VELS) are integrated into our curriculum to ensure children also learn important early literacy and math skills for kindergarten readiness.

Application and tuition information is available here.