NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
PDF on ERIC Download full text
ERIC Number: EJ1280494
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2020
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-2331-0464
Planting the Seeds for Nature-Based Learning: Impacts of a Farm- and Nature-Based Early Childhood Education Program
Rymanowicz, Kylie; Hetherington, Chelsea; Larm, Brooke
International Journal of Early Childhood Environmental Education, v8 n1 p44-63 Win 2020
Farm- and nature-based early childhood education programs have a unique potential to provide young children with skills and experiences that build a strong foundation for future learning and environmental stewardship, but can also to extend positive impacts to families. In this paper, we work to bridge the gap between research and practice by presenting a description and program evaluation of the Farm Sprouts farm-based preschool program. The Farm Sprouts program supports learning and positive child development in the context of the natural world, with a focus on environmental stewardship, food systems, and nature. Semi-structured interviews (n = 16) and surveys (n = 33) were conducted with parents of children enrolled in the Farm Sprouts program. These interviews and surveys collected information on parents' perceptions of how the Farm Sprouts program impacted their child, with specific focus on changes in children's cognitive, language, and social skills, scientific inquiry, interaction with nature, interest in exploration, as well as impacts on family interactions. The results of this program evaluation suggest that quality farm- or nature-based programs can positively impact a child's language and conversation skills, increase their interest in nature and desire to explore, and positively impact family interactions. Lessons learned and implications for other farm- and nature-based educational efforts are discussed.
North American Association for Environmnental Education. 1725 DeSales Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-419-0412; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A