Frequently Asked Questions

Please visit our Programs Page and find the session you are interested in and click the “Click Here to Enroll” button. From there you will be brought to the individual program page where you can add it to your cart and proceed with the checkout.

Once your payment is received you will receive a conformation email within 24 hours with an Emergency Information and Waiver Form, to be returned on or before your class date.

Yes! At the beginning of each class we will gather together for our Greeting and a story next to the Vernon Family Farm Store. After our story we will head down to our space under the hickory tree. 

If the farm store is behind you, walk straight and you will see us at the at the tree.

Please submit your payment through PayPal by sending your payment to Playfulgarden.nh@gmail.comOther payment methods can be accommodated by emailing Playfulgarden.nh@gmail.com,

 Payment must be received to ensure your enrollment is complete. 

We will be exploring in the elements so it will be important to check the weather and dress accordingly for each day. As the weather gets cooler and wetter, waterproof clothing will be key- even if there is no rain in the forecast! This will keep us dry and protect clothing from mud as well. Layers are always good option. When it is hot we can remove layers and when cold we have enough to keep us warm. 

Warmer Weather: 

  • Light-weight clothing
  • Layers for those days that start cool and gradually gets warmer
  • Sun hats
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug spray

Colder Weather:  

  • Long underwear
  • Base layer
  • Insulating layer such as a fleece
  • Top shell layer to block the wind
  • Snow pants for warmth and snow
  • Add rain suit or rain pants on cold, wet, and muddy days
  • Wool socks
  • Waterproof boots
  • Waterproof Gloves or Mittens (keep a spare in the car!)
  • Hat
  • Neck warmer

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.” 

― Alfred Wainwright

Playful Garden is an outdoor program that will run year round in all weather. We celebrate the snow, rain and sun!

 “To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake, it is necessary to stand out in the cold”

-Unknown Author

 

 

Mixed age groups benefit a group in many ways; our younger friends have peer models to learn from and older friends learn to lead, be patient and kind.
This also helps to focus on the individual needs of a child rather than the overall focus of the group.

In the past, spending time outdoors was what childhood was all about. Something has changed for today’s children. Whether it is because of our busy schedules, social media, or technology advances, the modern child is spending less time immersed in nature. What happened to catching frogs, feeling the earth beneath our feet, climbing trees, and skipping stones? Studies show that playing outdoors can have positive effects on self-esteem, stress and adversity. It can also improve concentration, learning, creativity, cognitive development, cooperation, flexibility and self-awareness.

Nature-based play brings all that is lost back to childhood. It helps us to build confidence by trusting our instincts, and exploring our impulses. It allows us to use what is found, in the natural world, as inspiration for play. Life long skills such as, positive relationship development, self-awareness, decision making,  problem solving, communication and working with others, comes from open outdoor exploration. With nature, the opportunities for the imagination are endless- a stick can be anything from a mixing spoon used to mix up soups or batters, to a magical wand, measuring tool or a building material. 

Nature play is not just for children! Adults have reported to feel more calm, grounded, more patient, and less stressedSo lets get outside to explore the natural world around us!

 

Play-based learning happens through hands on experience, through trial and error, through problem solving, through investigation and challenge, through FUN!

“Play is our brains favorite way of learning”

 – Diane Ackerman

If you have children who fall into different programs due to age, please enroll children in the 2.5 years- 5 year Free Rangers Class, Free Range Crickets

Playful Garden classes will run in all weather unless a dangerous weather condition has been forecast, such as flash flooding, hail, hurricane, temperature extremes, blizzard, tornado, or another event

Class cancelation will be posted on the Playful Garden Facebook Page. That announcement will be made at least 1 hour before the event. 

“Bad weather always looks worse through a window.”

-Tom Lehrer

Some people like to be prepared for everything and others like to travel light! Here are a few items Playful Garden finds useful:

  • A water bottle, clearly labeled
  • change of clothes for after class
  • A reusable bag or wet bag for wet clothes 
  • Appropropriate clothing and footwear for exploration, mess making, and  weather. Check out ” What would appropriate clothing be for you program?”

A morning at Playful Garden is time spent outside with friends, exploring the natural New Hampshire environment. Every child is unique, which means some children will gravitate to this experience immediately. Others may feel anxious and, especially with caregivers nearby, may gravitate towards staying close, in their comfort zone, and observing as opposed to participating.  That is ok!  We have found that many children just need some time to transition and ease into an outdoor classroom which is less structured than a typical classroom. 

After a couple days at Playful Garden we have found the vast majority of children find their groove and are able to participate fully, actively exploring in our outdoor community.  Playful Garden creates an opportunity for children and parents alike to Be Kind, and Be Safe and to experience nature in a supportive environment.  Just like your first few steps into a mud puddle may feel strange and uncomfortable, as you take it all in, the next few steps are exciting and fun! 

“Play provides an outlet for curiosity, information about the physical world, a safe way to deal with anxiety and social relationships. In the long run, play serves children’s inner needs, hopes, and aspirations.”

– Magda Gerber

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