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In Bloom In Maine: Promising Practices in Nature-based Early Childhood Education, Kittery, ME

April 21, 2018 @ 9:00 am - 4:00 pm EDT


Antioch University New England hosts three In Bloom east coast conferences this spring:

Witnessing the enthusiasm of early childhood professionals in their valiant efforts to get children outside has been inspirational and heartwarming. As before, at each conference we’ll be featuring the good work of practitioners from each region as well as spotlighting the work of Antioch University New England faculty members who teach in the Nature-based Early Childhood Certificate Program. We invite you to come to one of the 2018 In Bloom Conferences: Promising Practices in Nature-based Early Childhood Education!

Each conference has two keynotes and two sessions of concurrent workshops, bringing together a diverse array of early childhood professionals, higher education faculty, environmental educators, mindfulness practitioners and naturalists. When registering, be prepared to indicate your preference of morning and afternoon workshops. The In Bloom In Maine workshop descriptions and conference materials will be available soon. If you would like a conference brochure sent to you when it is available, please send an email to [email protected]

The conference brochure and workshop descriptions will be available soon.

Register here for In Bloom in Maine

Morning Keynote:

Keynote: From Trees and Ticks to Knives and Poison Ivy

Anne M. Stires, Founder and Director, Juniper Hill School, Alna, ME

From trees and ticks to knives and poison ivy to extreme cold and prolonged sun exposure, to the many other risk-based activities which push children (and teachers) to their edge, we’ll go on a journey to understand the importance of risk and how to manage risk in your current or future classrooms or programs. We’ll explore the roles of students and teachers at Juniper Hill’s programs in implementing risk-based activities, as well as their experiences of risk and the benefits we observe. Faculty make daily risk management decisions as a team and with their classes. We learn from and are trained by professionals throughout the year, including Maine guides/trip leaders, insurance agents, lawyers, and wilderness medics.

Topics that will be considered in the talk include: hazard identification, appropriate planning for risk, what kinds of risky play to allow and foster (tree climbing, fire building, tool use, winter wilderness trips) versus which to discourage and why, and research on the relationship between risk in nature play and overall health and development.

Afternoon Keynote:

Mindfulness of Body: Building our Connection to the Natural World

Susan Dreyer Leon, Ed.D. , Chair, Education Department and Coordinator, Mindfulness for Educators programs at Antioch University New England

As we help young children discover the natural world around them, we also have a wonderful opportunity to help them connect to the natural world within them–the amazing body-heart-mind system that allows us to perceive our environment, ourselves and each other.


Workshop descriptions:

Please see the conference brochure for workshop descriptions. (Add Link) When preparing to register, please know which concurrent workshop sessions you prefer.

Registration Information

When preparing to register, please know which concurrent workshop sessions you prefer. You can read workshop descriptions in the conference brochure.


  • Working Professional $125.
  • Group rate: 3 or more individuals from the same organization $100.
  • Antioch University Alumni $75.
  • Current AUNE students $50.


Antioch University New England accepts Paypal, credit cards and checks as payment for the registration. If paying by check, please complete the business section of the registration form with your organizations address for invoicing.


Cancellations received in writing 7-days in advance are eligible for a full-refund. Cancellations received within 6-days of the conference are only eligible for a refund if a someone from our waiting list can take your space. For more information, contact Peg Smeltz at [email protected]

Register here for In Bloom in Maine


April 21, 2018
9:00 am - 4:00 pm EDT


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