Nature Playgrounds

Where creativity and imagination come out to play.

Outdoor and nature play is both healthy and necessary for child development and overall well-being. 

As a Reggio-inspired school, we design our outdoor environments to be an extension of the classroom. The design of our nature playgrounds begins with embracing and understanding the outdoor environment that surrounds each of our facilities in North America.

Latest projects:
Learning Jungle La Mesa – coming April 2024

Coming soon 2024  | Learning Jungle La Mesa  – Outdoor Playground Revitalization

Artist Rendering

Learning Jungle Rancho

Reggio-inspired approach encourages collaboration and social interaction with unstructured play.

There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.

Swedish proverb

Rain or shine, children are encouraged to spend time outdoors each day to breathe in the fresh air. Our playgrounds include shaded areas and open spaces for children to comfortably enjoy regardless of the weather conditions*.

*Occasionally when extreme weather conditions occur, child will remain indoors. Indoor gross motor activities will be offered to ensure they are meeting developmental requirements.

Above anything else, our aspiration is to retain uninterrupted nature in its truest form where possible. Although Learning Jungle operates in numerous urban communities, our outdoor play areas are intrinsically designed to encompass natural elements into the space by intentionally placing and/or mimicking organic shapes and forms found in the natural environment. Whether it be uneven textures, materials or loose parts found in nature, the Reggio approach encourages collaboration and social interaction with unstructured play*.

*Unstructured play promotes creativity and imagination allowing children to explore through their own interests and curiosities. When an environment is open to their own interpretations, they can build their cognitive, motor and social skills. This encourages more critical thinking and problem solving. 
Learning Jungle Morse - Outdoor Play, mud kitchen

Practice of sustainability and building healthier communities.

Included in the Reggio approach to education is the practice of sustainability and building healthier communities through mindful waste management. Outdoor play at Learning Jungle encourages the use of recycled materials and household items that can be repurposed for learning and play. Favorite pastimes at our facilities are spent at the music wall, mud kitchen or reconstructing loose materials. The resources gathered for play are a combination of natural materials, open-ended objects, tubing remnants, old pots and pans, kitchen utensils and other useful items, many of which have been donated from our families over the years.

Learning Jungle Rancho
Learning Jungle - Handmade Bird Feeder

Natural materials gathered outside, at local parks and during neighborhood walks often become works of art and other ingenious projects. Throughout the year, our educators and students enjoy exploring the neighborhood to learn about its history and the special qualities that shape their community. Artifacts are collected to continually inspire children to ask questions, explore ideas and extend learning.

During the summer months, many local artists and community workers visit our classrooms to showcase plants, butterflies, farm animals and other species found in our ecosystem.

“There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place, where colors are brighter, the air is softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again.”

Elizabeth Lawrence

From spring seeds and seedlings to summer and fall harvest, outdoor gardens have been a staple at Learning Jungle, teaching children about ecology, botany, harvesting and healthy eating.

The benefits of gardening are endless and have proven to encourage sensory development and physical activity, as well as improve mental health.

Learning Jungle Poway