out outside - the forest school in the city
Everything you love about Oak Learners, NOW OUTSIDE!

Welcome to the Forest School in the City

Oak Learners endeavours every day to inspire learning through an authentic skill-based curriculum. Our teachers nurture children’s natural curiosity about their world with student-centered experiences. At Oak Learners, we believe every child can be successful when they belong to a truly supportive educational community.

oak outside - the forest school in the city

Outdoor Education plays a key role in skill development!

Playing and exploring outdoors are experiences that most adults today grew up with.

Yet, in the past few decades, the amount of time that children spend outdoors and the ways they experience their neighbourhoods, have changed drastically. Much of the recreational time of today’s children is spent on indoor pursuits, even among children who live in rural areas.

Many research studies over the past decade links children’s mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health with time spent outdoors, experiencing nature. For example, students have been shown to have increased focus, confidence, self-esteem and overall feelings of happiness and satisfaction with school.

Even something as simple as looking at a tree can have surprisingly calming effects! In addition, directly observing plants and animals help children develop an understanding of “systems”, that is, the relationships and processes in nature, while building their connections to community. Not only that but learning outside is fun! Students are excited and enthusiastic to try new activities and discover new things. This type of experiential, “hands-on” learning often reaches students who don’t thrive in a typical classroom setting.



Environmental Stewardship

Understanding the responsibility of caring for our local environment.

Navigation and Mapping

Developing skills to navigate the local community and trails.

Observation and Inquiry

Scientific investigation and STEAM integration sparked by natural observation and inquiry.

Sense of “Place” and Belonging,

Building an understanding our place and role in our community.

Local Culture and Heritage

Developing an appreciation for local culture, tradition and heritage.

Oak Outside Programming

Environmental Exploration, STEAM, Leadership and more!

From our Blog

Stay connected with News, Activities, our latest Research and More!
Local Hikes and Hidden Gems for Family Fun

Local Hikes and Hidden Gems for Family Fun

Winter lockdown doesn’t have to mean endless screen time and being stuck indoors. There are plenty of ways to get outside and explore the amazing secret hot spots of nature, art and culture that South Etobicoke has to offer. Here are my top 3 local hikes to explore with my own family and our students at Oak Learners!

The Best Winter Clothing for Kids, from Head to Toe!

The Best Winter Clothing for Kids, from Head to Toe!

This winter we have a lot to look forward to! From exploring snow hills to ice crystals to making igloos and snow angels. Help your little learners stay warm and dry this winter so they can continue learning and having fun in comfort. Outside exploration has been proven to lead to a plethora of benefits that helps your child develop crucial skills. At Oak Learners, our students are outside for extended periods of time in all winter weather: snow, rain or shine. Regardless of the forecast, we will continue encouraging our students to explore the natural world around them while pushing boundaries and taking risks.

The Importance of Children’s Physical Activity During a Pandemic

The Importance of Children’s Physical Activity During a Pandemic

With the recent events surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, many students have switched to online learning. Due to the pandemic, children are spending more time at home and lacking the physical activity facilitated through recess and gym class when they were physically attending school. It is important for parents to find ways to incorporate physical activity at home and prioritize healthy living. In doing so, families can reduce the risk of childhood obesity and reduce the stress and anxiety experienced during these unprecedented times.

Outdoor Learning: Sound Walk Adventures!

Outdoor Learning: Sound Walk Adventures!

Summer is a great time to get outdoors and enjoy the sunny weather while we can! Children are constantly learning and there are many outdoor activities that allow them to have fun while engaging with the world around them. Although kids are naturally curious and can direct their own learning by exploring the outdoors and asking questions, there are many activities that family members can introduce and facilitate to encourage students to think outside the box. One way to do this is with a sound walk!

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