From time to time people ask me to recommend books about nature preschools and forest kindergartens. It's tough to narrow down my list to just a few because there are plenty of fantastic resources. Here is my response to one of our members with a short list of great reads:
If you are new to approaches in nature-based learning, a must-read is Jon Young, Evan McGown, and Ellen Haas's book the Coyote's Guide to Connecting with Nature. It offers important insight as to the "how" of nature-based learning, and gives several sample activities to try. I especially love the mentoring approach that they describe.
Erin Kenny's book, Forest Kindergartens: The Cedarsong Way, is another resource if you want to learn more about a total nature immersion approach in the United States.
In terms of starting a nature-based program, David Sobel and Patti Bailie recently published Nature Preschools and Forest Kindergartens: The Handbook for Outdoor Learning. It covers a wide range of topics to help you dig into all aspects of your nature-based program.
And finally, I love Working in the Reggio Way by Julianne Wurm and Celia Genishi. No matter what philosophy of early childhood education you subscribe to, this book asks practitioners to critically think and reflect on our beliefs and practices. As you move through the exercises in the book, you can easily relate and apply your views about nature-based learning to many aspects of early childhood educations or settings. If you use this book as part of a team or staff, it can be an amazing, trans-formative experience that keeps evolving and deepening your practice over time. It is not written specifically for nature-based educators, but completely applicable.