Nature play and learning every day!


“Creating environments for healthy human development and a healthy biosphere for generations to come.”

Since 2000

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT and training includes theory, principles, and techniques that guide the design of play and learning environments with an emphasis on the design and management of natural environments to support healthy child development.

PROGRAMS integrate many multi-year PROJECTS with the aim of achieving higher levels of sustained quality. Projects are typically concentrated, short duration efforts that focus on specific design issues (e.g., design assistance, evaluation, professional development, or policy initiative).

RESOURCES are created, often in collaboration with NLI’s interdisciplinary partners, to support technical assistance, professional development, and generally to promote the importance of the natural environment in the daily experience of all children. Please use and share.

THE GREEN DESK contains numerous resources meant to improve outdoor learning environments and promote healthy, natural child development, physical activity, and nature-based learning.

¡Consulta nuestros recursos en pdf en español!

Many thanks to our sponsors!

News and Upcoming Events

Gardening With Young Children

Gardening With Young Children

The Gardening with Young Children Course is a 5-week self-paced distance learning course hosted on the NCSU online platform, Moodle. This course is...

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Start Small–With A Vision

Start Small–With A Vision

Kim Shaw will be giving a Keynote at Antioch University during the In Bloom ConferenceEducators observe children’s affinity to be outside. Once you...

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Did You Know Outdoor Time…

  • Supports gross motor skills
  • Encourages healthy eating
  • Improves eyesight
  • Promotes cognitive development
  • Improves academic performance
  • Lessens ADHD symptoms
  • Promotes self-confidence
  • Reduces stress
  • May boost immune system