Close
Dig deeper to get started.
Get Connected
Sign up for MyLakeNixon!

Register for programs, make online payments, and manage your account.

Get started
MyLakeNixon
Close
Preschool Director Monica Woods

Monica is our Program Developer/Lead Educator and she has been with us since summer staff orientation back in late May 2017. She whole-heartedly believes that children should have the opportunity to connect to the outdoors and is astounded at how everything she has done up until this point has prepared her for this amazing opportunity.

Monica is a native Texan, but got here as fast as she could. She moved to Little Rock in 2008, after falling in love with it while visiting family here for many years. She loves to surprise outsiders with stories of some of the beautiful places here, but always stops short from telling all she knows because she would really like for Arkansas to remain a secret.

She has two children, Tristan and Lucia, whom she chooses to spend time with above just about anyone else, and never takes for granted the gift of being a parent.

After backcountry guiding for several years in Colorado and Wyoming, nine years in the classroom and ten years homeschooling her own kids, Monica then tutored dyslexic students at Catholic High School before serving in her current position at Lake Nixon. Monica is an avid rock climber and often enjoys climbing in Northwest Arkansas, as well as in other parts of the U.S.

After doing her own research into outdoor preschools for many years, Monica could not be more excited to have this chance to provide this nature immersion experience for young children right here in Little Rock. You can email Monica at mwoods@2bclr.com.

Close
Educator/Camp Director Marie Brakebill

Serving as a full-time teacher, Mrs. Marie is the newest addition to the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool family. However, her ties to Lake Nixon and to Second Baptist Church are true and deep. Marie was born in Louisiana and has lived in Arkansas since 1986. She is married to her husband, Charles, for 39 wonderful years and has three children and six grandchildren. In addition to her role at Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool, Marie has served as Assistant Director for the Lake Nixon Summer Day Camp for the last 22 years.

Mrs. Marie began her teaching career 24 years ago when her children first entered preschool, and it wasn't long before she realized she had found her calling in teaching. Marie went on to earn an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education and continues to be as enthusiastic about education today as she was when she began.

In addition to her love of reading, Marie enjoys walking and has finished the Little Rock Half Marathon. Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool and Summer Day Camp is proud to have such a dedicated and hard working individual.

Marie's favorite Bible quote, "I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me." -Phil. 4:13

Close
Camp Director/Operations Coordinator Jeremy Spann

Jeremy is equally excited to lead both the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool and the Lake Nixon Summer Day Camp programs.

Throughout his life Jeremy has walked many paths, but through this new role at Lake Nixon Outdoor Center he has been blessed to find the most meaningful work, guiding youth from prekindergarten through middle school on their many adventures and building their faith in God.

Jeremy is a kid at heart, who is lucky enough to have married the love of his life, Elizabeth Spann. They have been blessed with two children, Kenneth and Miles. Jeremy brings to this new role a background in environmental science, his experience as a middle school educator, and serving the community through the Little Rock Climbing Center.

Jeremy seeks to provide the children and families of Central Arkansas with a trusted environment to grow, play, and learn. He looks forward to growing a meaningful relationship with the wonderful community surrounding Second Baptist, and fulfill his calling to serve through Lake Nixon Outdoor Center. You can contact Jeremy by emailing him at jspann@2bclr.com.

Close
Preschool Teacher Matthew Burnett

Serving as a part-time teacher, Mr. Matthew is a wonderful addition to the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool family. Matthew was born in Mississippi and grew up in Southern Arkansas. He has been married to his wife Brittany for 2 years. Before taking on his role as a teacher, Matthew worked at Lake Nixon's Summer camp as a substitute counselor.

Mr. Matthew is an Actor and Technician in local theaters like Murry's Dinner Playhouse and the Arkansas Repertory Theater. He has performed both with and for children many times in his Acting career and the transition to teacher was a natural one. He loves bringing his artistic know-how into the classroom by helping the kids act out thier favorite stories. Matthew has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre from Henderson State University.

Matthew considers himself to be a storyteller and life-long student.

Matthew's favorite Bible quote, "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord : and he delighteth in his way.

Psalms 37:23 KJV

Close
Preschool Assistant Emily Walker

Hi everyone! My name is Emily. I graduated from Bryant high school in Arkansas in 2018. After that, I worked for the Heifer ranch in Perryville as an education volunteer learning about how to be environmentally conscious, and teach others about poverty around the world, for a little under a year. After I left the ranch, I was an intern for the Arkansas Outdoor School Summer Day camp with the 4-H center in Ferndale. I spent my summer there learning more about the wilderness and growing my love for working with children. I live with goats, chickens and a dog, whom I love very much! I can't wait to spend more time with these awesome kiddos!

Close
FAQ Who Can Attend Outdoor Preschool?

The Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool is an all-weather learning community for children, ages 3-5. We welcome your child into our program as soon as he or she is able to use the bathroom independently.

Close
FAQ When Can I Visit the Outdoor Preschool?

Meet the teachers, visit the indoor and outdoor classrooms and find out what Outdoor Preschool is all about! Due to great community interest and support, meetings are arranged into small group tours.

Please call (501-228-0202) or email Monica Woods as soon as possible to arrange a tour.

Close
FAQ What if it’s Raining or Cold Outside?

Your preschooler’s safety is our primary concern and we will constantly monitor weather, especially on stormy and/or very cold days. We want your preschooler to be safe, always, and we also want to stress the importance of a true outdoor experience. Preschooler's outdoor time will be reduced when windchill temperatures are in the upper 20's, and the heat index is over 100 degrees. Rain suites are used when it is an especially wet and rainy day.

Close
FAQ What About Meals and Snacks?

Families are asked to supply their preschooler with a lunch and two healthy snacks each day. Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool will provide milk or a milk alternative to each preschooler during snack times. We encourage families to supply their children's food in packages he or she will be able to independently open themselves.

Close
FAQ When is Parent Orientation?

Registered preschoolers and families will need to attend the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool Orientation at the Lake Nixon Outdoor Center prior to school beginning. Our next Orientation will be August 27th.

Close
FAQ What is the daily schedule?

Our daily schedule is:
7:00am - 8:15am Morning Extended Care*
8:15am Drop Off
8:30am School Begins
8:30am - 11:30am Morning Outdoor Excursion (Snack at 9am)
11:30am - 12:00pm Lunch
12:00pm - 1:30pm Rest Time
1:30pm - 2:45pm Afternoon Outdoor Excursion (Snack at 2pm)
3:00pm School Ends
3:00pm - 3:15pm Pick Up
3:15pm - 6:00pm Afternoon Extended Care*
*Additional fees apply for Extended Care options

Close
FAQ What additional teaching resources will be used?

Our program draws from many resources. These include: North American Reggio Emilia Alliance, Conscious Discipline, North American Association of Environmental Education, Schoolyard Habitats, National Wildlife Federation, Growing Up Wild, Arkansas Game and Fish, Arkansas Environmental Education Association, and the Natural Start Alliance.

Close
FAQ What local partnerships does the preschool work with?

We have working partnerships with: River Valley Horticulture, Green Corner Store, Arkansas Heritage Quail Habitat, Wings Over Arkansas, and the Native Plant Society.

Step Into

Outdoor Preschool

Space is Limited

Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool is Enrolling Now!

Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool is an affordable, high quality, alternative to traditional preschool.

What is Outdoor Preschool?

The Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool is an all-weather learning community for children, ages 3-5. Our program closely follows a Forest Kindergarten model of full nature-immersion with emphasis on natural rhythms, seasonal changes and the natural sciences. Our classes are mostly student lead, by teachers trained to utilize childrens’ innate curiosity as a basis for further instruction. Our preschool classroom experience extends from our indoor classroom to our dedicated outdoor space. Our teacher to student ratio of 1:6 when traveling to and from our indoor and outdoor spaces, and 1:8 or better when in an enclosed area ensures your child’s safety and individual attention.  

Year-Round with Extended Hours:

Early childhood experts agree that consistency increases a child’s health and happiness. A year-round schedule prevents the need to transition back-and-forth from another program during the year. In addition, extended a.m. and p.m. hours help meet the diverse needs of families, while helping to build community. This consistency lays a foundation for learning that fosters childrens’ independence and confidence in trying new things.

Teaching Models:

We encourage and build on each child’s innate sense of wonder by guiding preschoolers with an inquiry-based teaching style, rather than a boxed curriculum. This builds autonomy as well as both critical thinking and problem solving skills. Our teachers work with each child and family to develop appropriate learning plans.

Children naturally learn to be self-motivated, cooperative, respectful, grateful, and aware of their impact on the earth during their experiences with us. Outdoor adventures in all weather conditions facilitate healthy risk-taking. Our days include immersion in garden and natural areas, helping to build a child’s sense of place in the world.

Social-Emotional Growth:

By building confidence through knowledge of and experience in the outdoors, students’ social and emotional growth is strengthened. By learning to take acceptable risks in the outdoors, preschoolers’ pride, self-worth and perseverance also grows.

Community:

Families who choose the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool will be supported in building positive attitudes toward all weather possibilities, since, in a child’s mind, there is no “bad” weather, only endless opportunities to learn and play through new and varied experiences. Our teachers help families choose the appropriate clothing for children, so they will always be comfortable out-of-doors. We also help families embrace the dirt and mess that comes with the fierce curiosity of a child being blessed with daily nature immersion.

It is crucial for us to intentionally create places of learning where children are encouraged in their love of the natural world, and inspired to gain more knowledge of it. As Baba Dioum reminds us, “In the end we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand; and we will understand only what we are taught.”

Navigation Previous icon
Navigation Next icon

2018-2019 School Year Monthly Fees:

Preschoolers need to arrive at Lake Nixon between 8:15am and 8:30am. We begin our day together promptly at 8:30am. Please plan on picking up your preschooler between 2:45 pm and 3:00 pm.

Monday – Friday: $650 [very few spots left!]

Monday/Wednesday/Friday: $475/month

Monday/Wednesday: $350/month

Tuesday/Thursday: $350/month [full. Waiting list available].

Email Monica at mwoods@2bclr.com for information.

Tuition does not include lunch or morning and afternoon snacks. More details on the FAQs below.

Extended Care Fees:

Our Extended Care program offers parents the option to drop off their child as early as 7:00am and pick up by 6:00pm.

Monday – Friday: $200/month

Monday/Wednesday/Friday: $125/month

Tuesday/Thursday: $75/month

The Fine Print: A nonrefundable yearly registration fee of $50 and a school year supply fee of $200 is due upon registration.

The benefits of being outside of the “box.”

It is no secret that children need to be outside; that it is a right, not a privilege, and that they thrive when able to do so. It has also been shown that children who are able to play for long periods of time outdoors are happy and confident, as well as better prepared for future academic work. The Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool will provide your child with learning opportunities not found in traditional settings. Our program provides the benefits of an outdoor preschool while ensuring your child practices age appropriate skills and learns through concrete experiences with a variety of natural objects.

LNOP makes local news!

FAQ

Scroll through our list of commonly asked questions and please feel free to shoot us an email with any other questions you may have.

Navigation Previous icon
Navigation Next icon
FAQ Who Can Attend Outdoor Preschool?

The Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool is an all-weather learning community for children, ages 3-5. We welcome…

Learn more
FAQ When Can I Visit the Outdoor Preschool?

Meet the teachers, visit the indoor and outdoor classrooms and find out what Outdoor Preschool is all ab…

Learn more
FAQ What if it’s Raining or Cold Outside?

Your preschooler’s safety is our primary concern and we will constantly monitor weather, especially on…

Learn more
FAQ What About Meals and Snacks?

Families are asked to supply their preschooler with a lunch and two healthy snacks each day. Lake Nixon …

Learn more
FAQ When is Parent Orientation?

Registered preschoolers and families will need to attend the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool Orientation at…

Learn more
FAQ What is the daily schedule?

Our daily schedule is: 7:00am - 8:15am Morning Extended Care* 8:15am Drop Off 8:30am School Begins 8:30a…

Learn more
FAQ What additional teaching resources will be used?

Our program draws from many resources. These include: North American Reggio Emilia Alliance, Conscious D…

Learn more
FAQ What local partnerships does the preschool work with?

We have working partnerships with: River Valley Horticulture, Green Corner Store, Arkansas Heritage Quai…

Learn more

Our Staff

Our educational team is a combination of traditionally certified state educators, nontraditional teachers, and other staff bringing a diversity of skills to the program. Learn more below:

Navigation Previous icon
Navigation Next icon
Preschool Director Monica Woods

Monica is our Program Developer/Lead Educator and she has been with us since summer staff orientation back in late May 2017. She w…

Learn more
Educator/Camp Director Marie Brakebill

Serving as a full-time teacher, Mrs. Marie is the newest addition to the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool family. However, her ties to…

Learn more
Camp Director/Operations Coordinator Jeremy Spann

Jeremy is equally excited to lead both the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool and the Lake Nixon Summer Day Camp programs. Throughout hi…

Learn more
Preschool Teacher Matthew Burnett

Serving as a part-time teacher, Mr. Matthew is a wonderful addition to the Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool family. Matthew was born i…

Learn more
Preschool Assistant Emily Walker

Hi everyone! My name is Emily. I graduated from Bryant high school in Arkansas in 2018. After that, I worked for the Heifer ranch …

Learn more

 

Camp
Day Camp
Arkansas's best day camp just got better.

This year Lake Nixon Summer Day Camp is expanding our program to provide more opportunities for kids to have fun.

Get started

© 2020 Lake Nixon Outdoor Center