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.
view through trees to pond in fall at Oak Knoll
Oak Knoll Wildlife Sanctuary, Attleboro

Bringing Nature Biodiversity to the Rainbow Workshop and Learning Center in Assonet

February 15, 2024

Rainbow Workshop and Learning Center, a nature-centric school for early childhood education in Assonet, was recently visited by Mass Audubon Educator Chris Bretti for guided explorations onsite. As part of our expansive school and group programming options, we had the opportunity to introduce local nature concepts to the students and build on them over time. 

Exploring Familiar Territory with a New Perspective

The Rainbow Workshop and Learning Center's backyard is a rich forest and wetland habitat, featuring a vernal pool and even a small meadow. The range in habitats provides ample opportunity to discuss the different wildlife onsite, using natural materials and learning play-based exploration.

Throughout this collaborative series, consisting of multiple visits over 8 months, the level of engagement and excitement in the students never dwindled. Our little friends had opportunities to, not only visually, but physically interact with live organisms such as wild macro-invertebrates, frogs, snakes, and an occasional visit from one of our many animal ambassadors.  

While exploring the habitats on the property, we've appreciated the magic that occurs throughout the changing seasons. Watching the trees drop their leaves, the mushrooms popping out after a fresh rain, and hearing the chorus of spring creatures are just a few of the many ephemeral natural wonders the students experienced.

Chris Bretti and class posing for a group photo against a forest in the background

The Positive Impact of Nature-Based Education

The students not only witnessed their changing environment individually, but actively engaged in social and team building activities like fairy house construction and toad abodes. This outdoor project and play based style of environmental education fosters stewardship in a new generation of nature heroes. These experiences better equip our students with tangible and transformative skills to participate as future leaders in a climate conscious world.

In addition, live nature-based interactions encourage students to conquer uncertainties about the environment. They can meet and observe creatures and situations in a safe, educational setting.

Sensory experiences in nature education also provide accessible and mindful learning opportunities. We encourage students to see, hear, smell, and touch elements in nature for holistic sensory learning.

Collaborating with Local Schools

All this work is possible thanks to Mass Audubon’s school and group programming options, which combine standards-based science content with the joy and excitement of learning about nature. The South East’s Adaptations Field Trips offer nature journaling and outdoor exploration for grades 2- 5, while our Bones & Skills Field Trips dive into recording wildlife observations for grades 6-8.

Invite Mass Audubon to Visit Your School

If your school or after school group is interested in an unforgettable and eye-opening outdoor experience, we can help!

For more information, please submit a School Program Request Form or Group Program Request Form, depending on your organization.