EASTERN REGION ASSOcIATION OF FOREST AND NATURE SCHOOLS

OUR STORY

MISSION

We are a non-profit organization that provides services, support and inspiration to nature-based early childhood programs to advance the field of early childhood environmental education and encourage life-long appreciation for our natural world.

THE START OF ERAFANS

With the growth of the nature preschool movement there is a need for relevant professional development opportunities for those of us working in nature preschools, forest kindergartens and other nature-based early learning settings. In response to this demand, the Eastern Region Association of Forest and Nature Schools (ERAFANS) was informally launched in early 2016 and incorporated in November 2016. The founding members are dedicated ECEE practitioners who represent several states in the eastern region of the U.S.

WHO WE SERVE

We offer professional services for teachers, naturalists, administrators and others working in nature-based early childhood education. Ultimately, we serve young children birth through age eight by providing inspiration and expertise for teachers of the nature-based programs they attend.

We support programs such as nature preschools, forest kindergartens, nature-based in-home childcare centers, elementary schools and the like. Our reach is inclusive of all early childhood learning settings, but focuses on emerging and established nature-based programs.

Our geographic focus is the Eastern region of the U.S. By narrowing our focus we can facilitate localized training, often in driving distance. This in-state networking helps facilitate a broad web of support in the Eastern region. Of course, everyone is welcome to attend our programs no matter where you live!

ERAFANS is guided by a group of nature-based early childhood education experts from across the eastern region. Learn more about our founding members and Board of Directors here.

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