We are very excited to share some information with you about the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool, beginning Fall of 2017.  The Lake Nixon Outdoor Center is a 200+ acre natural sanctuary 15 minutes from midtown Little Rock. We are blessed to have a beautiful space where children can learn, play, and grow, surrounded by woods, creeks, ponds, trails and wildlife.

Visit our FAQ page for more info!


In the age of standardized testing, screen time and what some see as a generation of excessively coddled children, a new movement of preschools is pushing kids outdoors, come rain or shine, heat or cold, to connect with nature and learn to take measured risks, in addition to math and the ABCs.

The Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool will be an all-weather learning community for children, ages 3-5. Our program will closely follow a Forest Kindergarten model of full nature-immersion with emphasis on natural rhythms, seasonal changes and the natural sciences. Children will learn about the plants, animals and systems in their own surroundings while developing a strong, place-based connection to the natural world. Participating in nature art and open-ended, outdoor play will foster creativity and complete focus as well as expose children to a wide variety of possible interests, to be revisited, perhaps, in the future.

We will encourage and build on each child’s innate sense of wonder by guiding students with an inquiry-based teaching style, rather than a boxed curriculum. This builds self-trust as well as both critical thinking and problem solving skills. By building confidence through knowledge of and experience in the outdoors, students’ social and emotional growth naturally strengthen. By learning to take acceptable risks in the outdoors, students’ pride, self-worth and perseverance will also grow.

Want to learn more about the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool?

Please complete the form below or email Monica Woods, Program Developer/Lead Educator, for more information about this unique program.

It is no secret that children need to be outside, that it is a right, not a privilege, and that they thrive when able to do so. It has also been shown that children who are able to play for long periods of time outdoors are happy and confident, as well as better prepared for future academic work.

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How many days a week would your family be interested in enjoying Outdoor Preschool? *
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Families who choose the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool will be supported in building positive attitudes toward all weather possibilities, since, in a child’s mind, there is no “bad” weather, only endless opportunities to learn and play through new and varied experiences. Our teachers will help families choose the appropriate clothing for children so they will always be comfortable out-of-doors. We will also help families embrace the dirt and mess that comes with the fierce curiosity of a child being blessed with daily nature immersion.

It is crucial for us to intentionally create places of learning where children are encouraged in their love of the natural world, and inspired to gain more knowledge of it. As Baba Dioum reminds us, “In the end we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand; and we will understand only what we are taught.”