Exploring Nature - Outdoor Learning Program

 Exploring Nature Outdoor Learning Program

Our Exploring Nature Outdoor Learning Program is a learning program for children 4 to 8 years old that runs for two months in the Summer (July and August). The program is led by our Registered Early Childhood Educators and Ontario Certified Teachers and follows an inquiry-based approach to learning in the outdoors. As usual, the program will spend the majority of the time outside, including many explorations in the Arboretum. The program is designed and led by Registered Early Childhood Educators and Ontario Certified Teachers and runs from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm each day with complimentary before and after care (8:00 am – 9:00 am and 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm). Please see the documents below for more information about the dates and costs for the OLP and a synopsis of the weekly program plans for summer 2024. Registration includes a freshly prepared plant-based lunch and two snacks each day. A document has been attached below that includes an example of the program’s weekly menu. We are able to accommodate some food allergies or restrictions; however, if your child has food allergies or restrictions, please contact outdoor@uoguelph.ca to confirm that your child’s needs can be met prior to registration.


Learning Outcomes

Time spent learning in nature has been shown to have dramatic benefits for children's social, psychological, and physical functioning.  Through this learning program, we aim to help children develop a lasting and meaningful relationship with nature that will help them become stewards of the environment.

As the outdoor environment provides a rich place for exploration and learning, there are many opportunities for connections to the Ontario Science and Technology Curriculum for the primary grades, which could include understanding life systems, understanding structures and mechanisms, understanding matter and energy, and understanding earth and space systems. The focus of the programming will include daily exploration both inside and outside with intentionally planned experiences that will support the children's learning.


To Register

The 2024 Program is currently full. For more information contact the register at Open Ed - Exploring Nature - Outdoor Learning Program


Hours of Operation

Drop Off - 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM

Programming - 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Pick Up - 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM



Please email outdoor@uoguelph.ca with any questions.


Cancellation Policy

A full refund will be issued if cancellation is received at least 1 month prior to start date. If you are cancelling a monthly registration, your registration will be cancelled for all four weeks, and you must cancel a July registration by June 1st and an August registration by July 1st. If you cancel a monthly registration but would like to re-register for one or more weeks, you can request to be added to the waitlist.