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Frequently Asked Questions

What is nature play?

Nature play is an outdoor experience that encourages children to explore, imagine, and connect with nature. It provides endless possibilities for creative play, sensory exploration, and learning in a beautiful, natural environment.

 

Nature play promotes physical and emotional wellbeing and builds positive dispositions towards learning.

To learn more, visit https://natureplayqld.org.au/about-nature-play

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What do I need to bring?

Pine Playgroup​

  • Hat and Sunscreen

  • Insect repellent

  • A water bottle 

  • A change of clothes (we will have some messy play; water play, sensory exploration and painting/art)

 

Feather Pine-eers​

  • Dress for the weather and for bush/messy play (raincoat and gumboots in wet weather, old clothes that can get dirty, long pants and sleeves are best in the bush)

  • Closed in shoes (please no sandals or thongs as we will be playing in the bush area and using tools)

  • Hat and Sunscreen

  • Insect repellent 

  • Lunch and a water bottle

  • A change of clothes for the drive home (things can get pretty messy!)

  • Mug for the attending parent (coffee/tea provided)

Are your programs safe?

We value risky play and are very passionate about the benefits of giving children the freedom to explore, discover, investigate and learn without adult intervention, however we do take safety very seriously. Our staff are qualified and experienced educators who provide learning environments and resources that have been thoughtfully planned each week. We scaffold the learning around the use of each tool/resource to ensure that each child can confidently use it safely. 

 

We are fully insured, and have policies in place for all activities and scenarios. We dynamically risk assess every week to ensure hazards are managed. All of our staff and volunteers have a current blue card and our staff have current first aid qualifications. 

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What can I expect when I attend Pine Playgroup?

As you step into the gardens, the smell of pine and the soft sounds of instrumental music greet you and you instantly feel your shoulders relax. The rush of the morning disappears. You look into your little one's eyes and see a sparkle; they are staring excitedly at the magical nature play spaces in front of them. 

 

We begin by gathering together to acknowledge the Country on which we play and sing some songs. It's a nice time to settle in, acknowledge familiar faces and hear about the morning's offerings.

You and your child/ren then move on to explore the beautiful play experiences. Although the experiences will vary each week, there will always be a nature craft activity to do together and take home. There will almost always be a table with sensory indulging  playdough of lavender, mint or orange. You may also find water play, a mud kitchen or potion play. Loose parts promote creativity and language development and will also make an appearance each week in different ways. You will engage in sensory and exploratory play and every single activity will encourage an appreciation for nature.

 

We spend an hour and a half outside, under the trees, surrounded by birds and insects, connecting with other families, refilling our cups after a busy week and taking time to breathe. Towards the end of our time together, we gather again for a storytelling session and say goodbye... until next week.

What can I expect when I attend Feather Pine-eers?

Our Feather Pine-eers group is held at a really special property with so many natural spaces to explore.

As you drive in the long driveway, you'll see cows on one side and if you're lucky, a donkey on the other. Keep driving, past the carpark to your left and you'll see our meeting place. We gather here to wait until everyone arrives, and then we take a short walk up to our bush space.

Before we begin to play, we gather in a Yarning Circle, acknowledge the beautiful country we are about to explore and establish what our day will look like. This will include a safety briefing and children (and caregivers) will have the opportunity to share thoughts and feelings with the group if they would like to.

We then move out to play, explore, discover and learn. There is a creek bed surrounding the area and a mini bush walk with a seat at the end for mindfulness and meditation. Under the shelter will be an area for caregivers to make themselves a cuppa. Although we require parental supervision at all times, we also ask that you give your children space and freedom to explore. The balance can be a bit tricky at first, but our amazing and experienced staff will be able to guide you with this.

Our main objective of Feather Pine-eer sessions is nurturing our wellbeing and building positive dispositions towards learning and healthy habits of mind. We develop these qualities through play... especially nature play. 

 

Children's play will look different each week and for each individual child and we cater for this by providing resources and materials to invite and provoke ideas and learning and then following their lead as to where the play goes. At a Pine-eer session, you will see lots of loose parts, art and craft supplies, hand tools and whittling knives, resource books, exploration equipment, a mud kitchen and a whole lot of nature! It is so difficult to say what our sessions will look like in detail, but each one will be engaging and fun. Featherpine staff will be on hand to guide and support our learning, taking time to teach safe tool and whittling knife use.

 

Each participant will be given a nature journal to use at our sessions. These can be used for art, documenting new discoveries, scrapbooking nature finds or mindful musings. We will also have a different nature craft each week to participate in and take home if desired. 

After our very busy morning, we gather for lunch and reflect on our day, share exciting discoveries and then participate in a storytelling session before saying goodbye and taking our happily exhausted bodies home to rest!

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Why is the Homeschool Group in 5 week blocks?What if we're sick or away for a week?

I am so passionate about creating community and connection, and it is so hard to build this when we have brand new faces each and every week. I feel like a five week series is a nice balance as it promotes community, while not being too much of a commitment or financial outlay for families. It is also important for our learning that we have some consistency, especially when it comes to learning about routines and how to use new tools and resources safely.

We have a very flexible cancellation policy. As long as you let us know at least two hours before the session is due to start, we will apply a credit to your next series or offer you a make-up day.

Can Featherpine Nature Play help us achieve our NDIS goals?

At a Featherpine Nature Play session, we focus on building a strong foundation for learning and wellbeing. Through play, children develop positive dispositions, such as confidence, resilience, persistence and creativity. Children connect with others in a positive and authentic way, developing important social skills with children and adults of all different ages. Nature also provides the perfect conditions for emotional regulation and wellbeing. During a Featherpine session, children are encouraged to take calculated risks, solve problems and work together in a supportive environment. 

We can create invoices for self-managed NDIS accounts; please choose the manual payment option when booking and then send us an email with your NDIS details and we will send you an invoice to use as needed.

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