Early Years Bush Skills Program

What is it?

The Nature School Early Years Bush Skills program is for young children aged 3-5 years and operates completely outdoors. Each term has a set program and set of skills to be focused on, based on seasonal planning, and taking into account the children’s ability at the time.


These skills can include:

  • Shelter building

  • Knot tying and lashings

  • Tool use, including peelers, whittling knives, hand drills and saws

  • Fauna and Flora identification

  • Fire safety and skills, and campfire cooking

  • Orienteering and navigating in the bush

  • Bush walking and navigating difficult terrain such as rocks, tree climbing etc

  • Natural resource construction such as weaving, nature paints, clay construction, natural dyes etc


Program Instructors foster each child’s skill building and incidentally, their holistic development. The program fosters the children’s growth as confident and competent young learners by giving them the opportunity to make their own choices, cultivating their curiosity and expanding independent thinking.


The program operates in all weather, including rain. While children can attend from 3 years of age, they must be independent in toileting also to be eligible for the program.


When is it?

Monday-Thursday: 9am-3pm

Friday: 9am-12pm

The programs operate in line with NSW state school terms.


Where is it?

Sessions operate from a variety of bushland settings within 5-20 minutes of Port Macquarie. Locations will be provided once you are in touch with the team. Each weekday will remain in the same location for the duration of the term unless there is an extreme weather warning. The Nature School has permits with a variety of stakeholders such as local landowners, and the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council.

How much does it cost?

Program Fees

The full day programs run Monday to Thursday and cost $83 per day. The half day program operates on Friday and costs $55 a day. Both are inclusive of GST.

Administration Fee

This is an annual fee ($120), per student, which covers administration and insurance to attend the program. This also includes sunscreen and insect repellent.

Payment Plans & Upfront Term Payments

We recognise that upfront payment of fees can be difficult for some families, so we do offer a fortnightly payment plan for term fees if requested. It is our hope that this will make our program more accessible for all families. For further information on fees and payment, please contact our Business Manager, Karen, at karen@tns.nsw.edu.au

Please refer to our FAQ page for any other questions before contacting the team.

For all enquiries, please email primaryadmin@tns.nsw.edu.au or call (02) 6581 5392

Please submit Waitlist Application form to primaryadmin@tns.nsw.edu.au

Monday 9 - 3
Tuesday 9 - 3
Wednesday 9 - 3
Thursday 9 - 3
Friday 9 - 12