Celebrating the importance of connections and relationships between children and nature.
The child should experience nature ‘in all its aspects –
form, energy, substance, sound and colour.
2022 marks ten years of our work as a grant making charity championing a Froebelian approach to early childhood education.
We're celebrating with a year of special events focused on young children's relationships and connections with nature. We're calling it a year of exploration!
Experience and understanding of nature were central to Froebel’s ideas.
Froebel emphasised that children should experience all aspects of nature, not just plants and animals. One of the best ways children can experience nature, he argued, is through their play outdoors in the garden and in the wider natural environment.
Through real life experiences, children learn about the interrelationship of all living things. This helps them to think about the bigger questions of the environment, sustainability and climate change.
Save the date 21 April 2022
On the evening of Froebel's birthday, we'll be hosting a special FREE online event all about children & nature.Details coming soon
The Nature Access Project
A new Froebel Trust funded project exploring young children and their families' experiences of playing, learning and being outdoors in nature.Learn more
We fund research into the learning and development of babies and young children. Research which looks at play, the natural world, respectful pedagogy, responsive and nurturing relationships, high quality education and training.
Recent Froebel Trust funded research projects have focused on children's connections and access to nature:
- A life ‘in and with nature?’ An exploration of outdoor provision in baby rooms
- An exploration of the influence of young children on adults within natural environments
- Bringing children’s voices to the fore of education for sustainability in the early years
Dr Jo Josephidou & Dr Nicola Kemp share findings from their research exploring outdoor provision for children from birth to two attending baby rooms in nursery settings.
Explore our online research library
Discover lots more nature related research projectsBrowse our research
Want to know more about Froebel, nature and outdoor play?
Download a free copy of our hugely popular pamphlet, Outdoor play and exploration by Helen Tovey
Further reading suggestions
- Friedrich Froebel. A Critical Introduction to Key Themes and Debates by Tina Bruce (2021) Published by Bloomsbury
- Bringing the Froebel Approach to your Early Years Practice by Helen Tovey (2012) Published by Routledge
- Download a free copy of Growing a Nursery School from Seed by Stephanie Harding and Felicity Thomas (2020) Published by Froebel Trust
Nature books for children
Ten of our favourite books for young children, all about connecting with nature:
- Let's Go for a Walk by Ranger Hamza, Ivy Kids, 2021
- The Big Book of Blooms by Yuval Zommer, Thames and Hudson, 2020
- When We Went Wild by Isabella Tree, Ivy Press, 2021
- Stanley's Stick by John Hegley, Hodder Children, 2012
- Sensational butterflies by Ben Rothery, Ladybird, 2019
- Out and About by Shirley Hughes, Walker, 2016
- The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle, Puffin, 1997
- We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen, Walker, 1993
- The Lost Spells by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris, Penguin, 2020
- Nature Trail by Benjamin Zephaniah, Orchard Books, 2021
What are your favourite nature related titles for young children? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggestions and recommendations.
The child who has cared for another living thing... is more easily led to care for his own life.