Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
Marsh beach and water  at Long Pasture
Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary, Barnstable © Hong Ren Wang

Nature Preschool at Long Pasture

Nature Preschool Explorers at Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary in Barnstable is a nature-based preschool for ages 3–5 that promotes whole-child readiness and helps children develop a lifelong relationship with the outdoors.

We are licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care Early Education. 


Located on a 101-acre wildlife sanctuary, our magnificent outdoor classroom offers a wide variety of habitats—including forest, field, vernal pools, and tidal flats—as well as a nature playground. 

At least 80% of your child's day will take place outside. Two canvas bell tents provide shelter and a base for adventures, and our indoor classroom is used for activities during severe weather.

Outdoor tent shelter for Long Pasture Nature Preschool Explorers


The mission of our nature-based preschool is to facilitate experiences in nature that promote whole-child learning in cognitive, social-emotional, and physical realms while helping children develop a lifelong relationship with the outdoors. 

Children in the program experience both free choice activities as well as guided experiences that allow them to have fun in nature while expanding their language, math, and science skills.

These play-based, multi-sensory, inquiry activities encourage your child's natural curiosity as they sort shells on the tidal flats, build tree forts and fairy homes in the forest, plant and tend our garden, and navigate our trails to explore ponds, vernal pools, butterfly mosaics, and more. Seasonal thematic units are developmentally appropriate and grounded in best practice early childhood standards.

Teachers & Class Size

Each class is taught by Mass Audubon staff who are licensed by the MA Department of Early Education and Care. The maximum class size is 10 students, with a teacher to child ratio of 1:5.

Program Options

Interested families are strongly encouraged to contact the Preschool Director to schedule a site visit or attend one of the planned Open Houses. 

Children must be age 3 prior to September 1 to be considered for admission.


  • Mondays & Wednesdays from 8:30 am–1:00 pm
  • September–June (36 weeks)


  • Tuesdays & Thursdays from 8:30 am–1:00 pm
  • September–June (36 weeks)


Limited space available

No registrations will be accepted without consent of the Preschool Director. A $100 non-refundable registration fee (to be applied to the spring payment) is required and must accompany the registration document. Please see the registration document for additional payment information.

Currently enrolled children and families are given enrollment priority. Waitlist families will be contacted as space become available. Contact the Preschool Director to be added to the waitlist.

All enrolled families must have current Mass Audubon Memberships.

Contact Information

Please email us if you have questions about our program or would like more information.