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Image by Jamie Taylor
Image by Jamie Taylor

Welcome
to Little Earth Forest School Iowa
at Dallas Center

Central Iowa’s first full-time Forest School

A preschool to 5th grade educational program
to raise whole & connected humans

Image by Senjuti Kundu

A Human-Centered Approach

that fosters and values all the aspects that make us human and whole: Creativity, Connections, Diversity, Self-Awareness, Purpose.

Image by Annie Spratt

Learning in nature and with nature

nature is not just the place where our learners spend most of their time, it is one of our most important teachers.

Image by Johannes Plenio

Education for Sustainable Development

gives learners of all ages the knowledge, skills, values and agency to address interconnected global challenges including climate change, loss of biodiversity, unsustainable use of resources, and inequality.

The Little Earth difference

Success

is a result

not a goal 

Learning is a collaborative effort

Diverse learning abilities are welcome and necessary

Image by Annie Spratt

FROM THE ROOTS UP

Forest School Iowa is a child-centered inspirational learning process, that offers opportunities for holistic growth through regular sessions in nature. It is a long-term program that supports play, exploration, learning and supported risk taking.

It develops confidence and self-esteem through learner inspired, hands-on experiences in a natural setting. 

It creates a safe, non-judgmental nurturing environment for learners to try things and develop a deeper sense of self. 

Forest School inspires a deep and meaningful connection to the world and an understanding of how a learner fits within it. 

Services

Our Programs

2.5 to 10 y/o - Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 1 pm - Extended hours 8:30 am to 2:30 pm

Image by Marcus Wallis

Preschool: 2.5 to 5 y/o

a nurturing multi-age program for littles who learn through the hundred languages belonging to all human beings, and grows in relations with others and nature. 

Image by Ben White

k-5 

an interdisciplinary program that intertwines literacy, critical thinking and responsible stewardship through hand-on, project-based and passion-based activities as an opportunity to inspire positive change.

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Summer Camps: 2.5 to 10 y/o

for kids that are ready for adventures away from the confinement of home or classroom while they unplug from technology in order to connect with nature and eachother. We offer nature camps throughout the summer.

Where we are

Located in Dallas Center, a “quietly progressive community,” Little Earth Iowa is nestled among community parks, tree-lined trails, and fresh-water ponds all within a few city blocks, and over 2,200 trees at the Brenton Arboretum in our “backyard”. Our campus serves as a platform for different age-level groups to engage in outdoor education, play-based and project-based learning as well as environmental education. For the watchful learner, fox, skunk, raccoon and deer sightings lend themselves to endless questions and exciting discussions! 

 

Shelters, tents and indoor space provide necessary protection from Iowa’s elements and space for our culinary projects and academic learning. 

 

Conveniently located near Des Moines suburbs Grimes (12 min), Waukee (12 min), Johnston (22 min), Urbandale (22 min), West Des Moines (27 min) and neighboring Adel (11 min) while only 30 min from Iowa’s capitol.

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The benefits of forest schooling

Nature Class
INCREASED RESILIENCE
BETTER HEALTH
ENHANCED SOCIAL AND COGNITIVE COMPETENCE
Outdoor Education

IMPROVED COMMUNICATION

CONCENTRATION

MOTIVATION

SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

Climbing a Tree
IMPROVED GROSS AND FINE MOTOR SKILLS

Source: Uk Studies

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