"Never be within doors when you can rightly be without." -Charlotte Mason
Avonlea Nature School was created in 2022 to meet a need in Monroe County for a Christian homeschool co-op opportunity for families with young children ages 4-7. Starting in Autumn '23, we will also have an educational program for grades 3 through 6. We meet once weekly for three to four hours at a private campground, giving our children a forest school day filled with the beauty and wonder of God's creation, and the fun of free play with friends!
Avonlea Acorns: Grades PreK through 2nd
Our forest kindergarten program begins with circle time including prayer and hymns, rhymes, finger plays, and a nature discussion. We then embark on a nature walk, and children have plenty of time to explore and play. After lunch, we enjoy adding an entry to our nature journals, picture books, and a craft or activity.
Rain or shine, we dress for the weather and enjoy experiencing the seasonal changes throughout the year.
Gentle instruction with "Exploring Nature with Children," a Charlotte Mason-Inspired curriculum
NATURE PLAY & EXPLORATION
Free play among tall pine trees, wooded trails, open fields, and creek
THE LORD GOD MADE THEM ALL
Keeping the focus on Christ through worship, prayer, and a Christian worldview
FELLOWSHIP FOR MOMS
A community of support and fellowship for homeschool moms of little ones
UPPER ELEMENTARY (COMING SOON)
Avonlea Oaklings: Grades 3+
Currently in development for Fall '23, our Charlotte-Mason inspired elementary program will be Christ-centered and also Classically-aligned. This versatile program will serve the needs of our families by providing science education through in-depth nature study and living books, and physical education through invigorating all-weather hikes. Students will also learn the common arts skills of bushcraft, tracking, foraging, and more. Illinois required subjects covered include sciences and physical education.
Additional, optional readings and activities will be suggested for completion at home to provide a well-rounded, rich and robust course of study.
IS THIS A RELIGIOUS PROGRAM?
Yes! Our founder is a devout Christian and the program was specifically developed in order to share the beauty of God's creation with our children. Together, we pray and worship the Lord through classic hymns, and all nature teachings are shared with a Christian worldview. No specific doctrine is taught.
WHAT IS THE PARENT INVOLVEMENT?
While we will have a main kindergarten teacher and a main elementary teacher, parent involvement is essential for our program. Families with children in the kindergarten group will need to sign up for two weeks of bringing books and craft supplies, and we will need 4 or 5 parents to lead various common arts activities with the elementary students throughout each semester.
WHAT IS THE COST?
Our registration fee is $40 per family per semester. Fees cover group insurance and website maintenance. Each student will also need a T-shirt, which cost $10 each. Otherwise, families are responsible for making sure they are adequately outfitted for all weather and nature journaling supplies.