This is a guest post from my dear friend Audrey, who is a teacher at Marietta’s Natural Learning Alternative Preschool. My son attended this child-led preschool alternative and home school co-op over the summer and we really enjoyed it. We look forward to dropping in more next summer!
Being a parent to young children can be terribly isolating at times. You can start to feel cut off very quickly when your only company is a tiny, non verbal (although adorable) human being. Once your child reaches toddlerhood and the haze of sleepless nights starts to clear you usually start to look around for outlets to engage with your little one outside of your home. When I had my first child, I struggled with finding activities that I could take her to that would allow her to explore and exercise her developing social skills. More than that I desperately wanted to find a community I could connect with as a parent. I tried a few meetup groups but couldn’t seem to click with anyone. I would always leave feeling sad at my lack of connection to the other parents and disappointed in the quality of the activities geared towards my young child.
I started attending Natural Learning Alternative (NLA) when my oldest daughter was two and a half and as soon as I stepped through the door I knew I had found a home. I am honored to be teaching the NLA toddler program this year. For me, NLA was the community I was searching for, and needed as a parent. It is a wonderful place of connection and support for those of us in the thick of parenting toddlers and preschoolers.
For the children, NLA offers a child led, nature based program where children are respected and celebrated as individuals. The toddler program builds the foundation for a lifetime love of learning and offers children the chance to explore, connect and play! What I love about NLA is the freedom and trust that my children are given. There is sensory play, building, science, arts, dramatic play and as much outside time as the individual child wants. There are no forced group activities but rather the child is allowed to explore and play with what interests them most and there are always more things to discover. I firmly believe that children learn best through play and free exploration and that is what NLA, through a content rich environment, offers them.
If you are looking for a connection with like minded parents, if you want your child to learn, play and grow at their own pace, if you want to be a part of an incredibly caring community that believes in gentle, respectful parenting, then come to NLA for a visit, we would love to meet you!