Mud Kitchen · Walking Trails · Stump Circles · Amphitheater/Stage · Free & Creative Play Areas · Gardens · Bird-Feeding Areas · Pollination Stations
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@ Bentley Community Schools
We have partnered with Genesee County Parks’ For-Mar Nature Preserve & Arboretum to provide nature-based education using their Environmental Educators. Begindergarten makes regular visits to the 383 acre nature preserve for guided programs and hikes through the trails, around ponds and creeks, up into the barrier free treehouse and even interaction time with live animals. For-Mar Environmental Educators also regularly come to us to conduct additional in-classroom programs. More information about For-Mar Nature Preserve & Arboretum can be found at geneseecountyparks.org.
Questions or Concerns? Contact us:
Outdoor Learning Center
For-Mar Nature Preserve
A Nature-Centered Program
for 4 and 5-year-olds*
Helping You Make The Right Choice for Your Child
*Students must turn 5 by December 1st to be eligible.
Debra McCollum, Barhitte Principal
Why become a
Small class size
Seamless transition to kindergarten
Innovative nature curriculum
Developmentally appropriate programming
Parent & family engagement activities
Staff dedicated to meeting the needs of your student
Become part of the Barhitte family
Community School District
6080 Roberta Street
Burton, MI 48509
Begindergarten is part of our public school program and offered at no cost. We will offer education, food service, and busing as normal.
Tending to a school garden
Building forts and creating games
Food preparation and taste-testing
Reading, writing, counting & drawing with and about nature
Team building exercises
Begindergarten will follow the same school calendar and schedule as the rest of the school. It is a full-day program that runs 5 days a week from 8:25 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The school calendar can be found on Barhitte's website.
What is the cost of the program?
Children who turn five by December 1st are eligible for this program. If your child turns five after September 1st, families must sign an "intent to enroll" form, which will be available at registration.
what is begindergarten?
What is the schedule?
What children are eligible?
Frequently Asked Questions
We recognize that not all students mature at the same rate and some may need additional time and support to be successsful kindergarteners.
Begindergarten provides children with an additional year to grow physically, emotionally, academically, and socially before starting kindergarten.
Students will gain an understanding of their role in the community, as well as confidence, self-esteem and friendships. Through hands-on experiences, they will begin learning about letters, numbers, sounds, and other developmentally appropriate skills.
Our curriculum will also be nature-centered, meaning students will experience much of their learning in an outdoor or enrironmentally-focused setting.
Our program combines environmental education with early childhood to create meaningful outdoor experiences that are developmentally appropriate.
Research shows that outdoor play develops a child's physical, social, and cognitive skills.
We work to do this by providing an interactive environment, developing activities center around children's abilities and interests, encouraging problem-solving and conflict-resolution, allowing students to work together, involving parents and families in the program, and celebrating diversity in the classroom and in the environment.