How do I enroll my child?
  1. Give Tara a call in the afternoons at 734-210-1319 to go over your questions.
  2. Parent observation of the program: schedule a visit to make sure the program lines up with your expectations.
  3. Child biography parent-teacher conference: we cherish the opportunity to hear more about your child!
  4. Home visit: our teachers come to your house for a 45 minute visit to help strengthen your child’s connection between home and school!
  5. Tour of Miller Nature Area for your whole family.
  6. School visit with parent and child: your child gets a taste of Forest School!
  7. Child’s first day, a half session: your child builds up confidence for their first full session!

    These steps usually set a child up to have a successful transition. If your child needs additional support adjusting, parents may attend with their child.

Are the children outside all the time?
At the Ann Arbor Forest School, as long as conditions are safe, we hold class. As experienced teachers in outdoor education, Tara and Casey design the day’s activities to manage the well-being of every child—and makes sure parents know how to properly dress their children for the weather. We do not have an indoor facility and close when weather conditions are unsafe to be outside (e.g. lighting, high winds, freezing rain, freezing temperatures).
How do we keep warm in winter?

We wear lots of layers of wool, fleece, synthetics, and down. These fabrics keep us warm and dry even if a child manages to get wet. We help you find the right gear and some items are available for rent. To keep our bodies warm, we keep active by taking walks and sledding. We stay well-hydrated to help our bodies regulate our temperatures. For relief from the deepest cold, we close when the ambient temperature with the windchill will not be comfortable or safe to play outside for three hours. When class is cancelled due to weather, an optional makeup class with be offered whenever possible.

What if it's really hot out?

To manage the heat in the warmer months, we make sure that we are prepared with sun hats, sun shirts, loose light-colored cotton clothing, and closed-toe sandals. We hydrate, stay in the shade, and take shorter hikes. For relief from high heat and humidity, we close when it will not be comfortable or safe to play outside for three hours.

What do you do when it rains?
If there is no lightning, we enjoy the rain and keep dry with proper gear. We wear rain coats, rain pants or waders, rain gloves, and rain boots. The rain provides us new opportunities to learn. For example, we might go on a puddle walk to discover the water cycle firsthand. The children hypothesize where in the park we will find the most puddles. We play in the puddles and follow the water as it flows, making the connection to the creek.
What is the student-to-teacher ratio?
The student-to-teacher ratio is 1:6 for children ages 3 to 7.
Do you provide aftercare?

We do not provide aftercare, but Ann Arbor Children’s House and Summers-Knoll School welcome our students in the afternoons. Contact their programs directly for rates and availability.