Rogue Valley Messenger Event

Foxes learn the hand drill

Foxes learn the hand drill.

Now preschool children in our area have an opportunity to enjoy a deeper connection to nature while developing the skills of exploration, expression, questioning and active learning — all beneficial to future learning.

Registration is open for Coyote Pups — a new outdoor preschool for children ages 3 to 5 — at the Coyote Trails School of Nature in Medford. Class will be held 9 a.m. to noon, Monday through Wednesday. The term begins Jan. 9, 2017 and continues through May 31, 2017.

An open house will be held at the school from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 10, during which parents may tour the school and meet instructors. Learn more about Coyote Trails School of Nature and get more details on the Coyote Pups Preschool at or by calling 541-772-1390. The Coyote Trails Nature Center is open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Coyote Trails, 2931 S. Pacific Highway, Medford, is located just behind the Harry and David ball field in the U.S. Cellular Community Park. The school’s 12-plus acres provide a safe setting for children to become comfortable in the outdoors while learning awareness of self, others and the natural world. The preschool is recorded with the State of Oregon Office of Child Care.

Throughout the term children will develop skills such as using writing tools to share observations in nature and enjoying games and activities that build body awareness and develop large motor skills. They will learn about plants and animals through observation, creative play and stories and they will discover how plants and animals depend on water in our valley’s watershed. Opening and closing circles will give children opportunities for sharing 2 what they have learned and expressing ideas or experiences. “Sit spots” will provide quiet time for tapping into senses and deepening awareness of the natural world. Developing a philosophy of living in harmony with the Earth will be encouraged.

Learning outside employs children’s natural instincts to explore and addresses the growing evidence that being outside lowers the risk of obesity and depression, improves balance and agility, reduces stress, supports creativity and problem solving, and improves attention and self-regulation. The school’s outdoor dome provides the added bonus of a magical shelter when the need arises or an activity may be enhanced by an indoor setting.

A coyote pup learns fire skills

A coyote pup learns fire skills.

A Coyote Pup connects with a tree

A Coyote Pup connects with a tree.

Little Foxes in the field

Little Foxes in the field.