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In Bloom In Asheville: Promising Practices in Nature-based Early Childhood Education

April 7, 2018 @ 9:00 am - 4:00 pm EDT


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

  • In Bloom in Asheville (North Carolina) – Saturday, April 7, 2018
  • In Bloom in Maine (Kittery, ME) – Saturday, April 21, 2018
  • In Bloom in Vermont (Brattleboro, VT) – Saturday, May 19, 2018

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 workshop sessions, 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. You may view the workshop descriptions and conference materials here.

View Asheville Conference Brochure


Register Here for In Bloom – Asheville, NC


Morning Keynote:

David SobelDavid Sobel – Nature Preschools and Forest Kindergartens The original kindergarten the children’s garden conceived by German educator Friedrich Froebel in the 19th century, was a place where children learned through play, often in nature. That idea is fast eroding. Children aren’t playing in the garden anymore; instead they’re filling in bubbles on worksheets. The new movement of nature-based early childhood education can reverse that trend. There are thousands of forest kindergartens throughout Europe and new programs opening every month in North America. Let’s examine the promise of this healthy approach towards living and learning outdoors with young children.

During the morning keynote we’ll be showing the movie: The Best Day Ever: Forest Days in Vermont Kindergartens. The movies was filmed in public school kindergartens in Hartland and Norwich, VT and illustrates the benefits of one day each week spent outside, year round, with Kindergarten children. This grassroots movement has spread to more than two dozen public schools in Vermont, New Hampshire and Connecticut.

Afternoon Keynote:

Rachel Larimore – From Preschool to Early Elementary: Learning from One Community’s Journey with Nature-Based Education

High-quality nature-based early childhood education (NbECE) doesn’t happen overnight, but through community collaboration NbECE can be integrated into all levels of early childhood education. Using preschool and early elementary programs in Midland, MI as an example, Rachel will provide the group with ways, no matter your starting point, to better integrate nature into your program structure and broader community.

For over twelve years Rachel Larimore served as the Director of Education at the Chippewa Nature Center in Midland Michigan. In 2007 she founded the Chippewa Nature Preschool, a licensed nature pre-school -one of only twenty of its kind in the country at the time. During her tenure she also co-chaired the construction of a LEED certified preschool facility at the Nature Center. She is now a doctoral student at Michigan State University and conducts research in nature-based early childhood education for Antioch University New England.

Registration Information

When preparing to register, please select a first and second choice workshop for both the morning and afternoon workshop sessions. 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, AUNE and or Full-time NC University Students $75.


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, Asheville, NC



April 7, 2018
9:00 am - 4:00 pm EDT


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