Niki Buchan

Speers Point, NSW, Australia - Natural Learning Early Childhood Consultancy

Workshop title: Nature for Everyone, exploring Nature therapy

In this presentation we will explore well-being and the benefits Nature offers to all. Regular access to Nature and its elements should be the right of every child. The benefits of just BEING in a space where children are nurtured by Nature and by adults who care and understand what they really need, where every child is valued for who they are and where children can play freely, are crucial elements in promoting the health and well-being of all.
We will look at the practicalities in offering such a program, what it looks and feels like, what resources are needed and overcoming possible challenges. Niki will share a case study of an innovative Early Intervention program with a focus on Nature, Nurture and Play where children aged from 3 - 12 have benefitted and shown marked improvement in levels of anxiety, stress and behavioural issues. Being in Nature has a therapeutic value for all.

Personal Bio: With a biomedical background, Niki is originally from South Africa, lived in Scotland for many years and has been calling Australia home since 2011. She has a great love for the outdoors and has been working with both adults and young children in very consultative, naturalistic environments for 35 years. She is the author of numerous books including Children in Wild Nature.

Niki is a qualified Forest School Leader, helped to develop forest Nature Kindergartens in Scotland and was the Head of these until she was offered a position in Australia. She is recognised as one of the most experienced nature pedagogues, promoting natural learning and supporting others in creating and developing their own nature based practice models.

She works internationally as a conference keynote speaker, nature pedagogue, nature kindergarten facilitator, naturalistic playground advisor, international study visit facilitator, mentor, author as well as delivering a large range of professional learning opportunities on all aspects of early childhood education and care.

Niki Buchan