Best play/nature-based schools & early years centres in WA

As referred by followers on Maggie Dent’s Facebook page September 2021
A summary of people’s comments are listed in bullet points under school names.

Disclaimer: Please note that this list is compiled from comments made by Facebook followers. It is not the opinion of Maggie Dent or her employees, nor are these recommendations to be considered formal endorsements by Maggie Dent. When deciding which school is best for your child, it is important to make your decision based on your individual child – there is no one-size fits all.

However we asked our 200,000+ Facebook followers “Which schools in WA have you observed have a focus on:
* play-based learning in the early years, and / or
* strong nature-based focus in their teaching and learning…”


Here’s what they said:

Alkimos Primary School – Alkimos

  • Son has flourished. Therapy team, gardening club. Fits all learning

All Saints College – Bull Creek

  • Have a play based program which includes bush school for PP-Yr2

Amelia Street Early Learning Centre, daycare (formerly Climb Westminster)

  • Reggio Emilia based approach with a beautiful backyard with a mix of nature play and traditional equipment.

Amare Child Care Centre– Bassendean

  • New nature playground. Stones, dry creek bed, natural materials and lots of interesting areas. Hens and baby chickens

Annie’s Playschool – Mount Claremont

  • We love it. Learning through play

Armadale Primary School – Armadale

  • Little school nestled into nature.

Bannister Creek Primary School – Lynwood

  • The students make cubbies in the bush. Nature play in the Early Childhood area and an Aboriginal garden.

Banksia Montessori School – Dianella

  • Kids never idle and bored. Wonderful little preschool
  • A small 3-6 year old school with around 25 kids and 3 teachers. 3 year olds go home at 12 so even less kids in the afternoon. The kids choose their activities, wonderful, loving teachers. They truly develop a lifelong love of learning through play. My daughter loves going there and never wants to miss a day. Beautiful introduction to “school” where the kids get really confident within them! Amazing outdoor area with big lush trees and nature elements, music cubby and much more! Multicultural and parent owned!

Bayswater Primary School

  • Awesome Imaginative Playground

Beaumaris Primary School – Ocean Reed

  • Especially Mrs G in kindergarten
  • Incredible when we went there
  • Great school
  • Amazing play-based learning
  • Teachers are amazing and have fabulous ideas and spend a lot of time getting to know the children
  • Fantastic example of a school where the entire community works together. Fantastic play area based on nature play concept. Strong leadership

Beldon Primary School – Beldon

  • Big nature play and awesome veggie patch

Blue Gum Montessori

  • Leading Independent School that develops confident, independent, community-minded children, inspired to life-long love of learning.

Bold Park Community School – Wembley

  • Love Bold Park
  • Their direction is wonderful
  • Truly inspiring place

Booragoon Occasional Child Care Centre – Booragoon

  • Outdoor area is absolutely beautiful and the educators very caring

Born Wise Learning – Carine

  • My kids attend a nature and play based homeschooling program for early years called Born Wise. It’s so awesome, they love it, all the kids that attend thoroughly enjoy it.

Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School Gelorup

  • Makes great use of its bush environment. The children enjoy it from kindy through to high school. Lots of bush walks, a mountain bike track and exploring. There’s a big vegetable garden and chickens too.

Byford Community Kindergarten – Byford

  • The best

Canning Vale Pre-Kindy – Canning Vale

  • Community base service that is all about play. Flow between indoor and beautiful natural outdoor

Capel Primary – Capel

  • Bug club during breaks, lots of natural bush play in appropriate months.They also have a great outdoors club where kids can go beach fishing once a term. Damper making on camp fire.

Careforkids Day-care – Mosman Park

  • Awesome day-care which has a beautiful nature based playground. My little absolutely loves it there and her teachers

Carey Baptist College – Forrestdale

  • have forest school and a school dog!

Carmel School – Dianella

  • Walker Learning approach in Kindy, PP and year 1. Play based learning and fantastic outdoor areas – elaborate mud kitchen, nature playground and ever changing loose parts. Worm farm, nature walks and tree climbing

Carmel Adventist College – Bickley

  • Lots of play based and nature based learning. Beautiful hills environment.

Casa Mia Montessori Community School – Bassendean

  • Best climbing tree. Dedicated staff, nature and loose play, Montessori materials the support development of whole child

Chapman Valley Primary School – Chapman Valley

  • Amazing ethos, awesome approach to nature based play. Fantastic staff. Brilliant tiny school

Child Side School – Boyanup

  • Play based. Love it
  • Child Side is amazing

Children’s Garden – Melville

  • It is only up to kindy age, but BRILLIANT, caring, long-term staff, mixed ages, kid-led activities, and fantastic nature space outside. Lovely and small too.

Chrysalis Montessori – Glendalough

  • Great school

Como Children Day Care

  • Best day care ever
  • Amazing
  • Couldn’t be happier. Beautiful garden, veggie patch, trees, art studio, music studio and home cooked meals
  • Reggio Emilia and Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligences

Compass Early Learning Centre – Merriwa

  • Beautiful nurturing philosophy

College Community Childcare – Bunbury

  • Strong focus on nature based learning. Playground has wooden features, fish, fruit tree, water play and edible garden

Connolly Primary School – Connolly

  • Nature play space. Outdoor play investigations. Play based approach
  • Amazing

Cottesloe Primary School

  • So much to celebrate at this independent school – Maggie Dent

Court Grammar School (previously Serpentine Jarrahdale) – Mundijong

  • Play based learning
  • Play based learning. Lots of equipment made with wood, stepping stones, water paly, vege garden, chickens, bush to walk around in, tree climbing, cubbies, fire pit.

Craigie Childcare Centre – Craigie

  • Small centre. Always visiting local parks and community spaces.
  • Staff are amazing
  • My grandson goes there and very impressed.

Curtin Primary School – Manning

  • Fantastic play based program for early years. Gorgeous, friendly, small school with nature playground on the way

Curtin University Childcare

  • Amazing sensory garden and the kids do loads of art.

Darlington Primary School – Darlington

  • Play based learning. Nature based, risk taking play. Literacy and numeracy programs far and beyond others

Dardanup Primary School – blog post image is taken from Dardanup

  • Beautiful nature playground.

Dardanup Primary School

  • Fabulous nature play spaces for ECEC – so much to love with children playing freely surrounded by amazing dedicated staff … our kids love this place and can’t wait to get there every day!

Dianella Primary College – Dianella

  • Very big on play based learning and have amazing outdoor spaces

Drovers Little Learners – Wanneroo

  • Promotes play based learning, has animals to interact with and nature is incorporated in everyday programmes and excursions.

Dunsborough Cornerstone – 3 hours south of Perth

  • Beautiful bush setting

Early Learning Programme – Tranby College.

  • The Kindy and Pre-Primary programmes are play-based and much of the learning is through investigation and discovery.

East Victoria Park Primary School – East Victoria Park

  • Wonderful new nature play area. So, impressed with the ECE staff

Eco Early Learning & Bush Kinder – Langford, Thornlie & Stirling (coming soon)

  • Family owned Childcare.
  • Reggio inspired space will be a welcoming place for your family.

Edgewater Primary School – Perth

  • Awesome nature playground

Edney Primary School – High Wycombe

  • Best move we could have made

Eton Farm Education – Serpentine

  • This amazing little place is semi-rural and hands on, play based education.

Frederick Irwin Anglican School – Mandurah

  • Walker learning program
  • Play based learning and its changed my little man’s whole attitude to school and learning. Great environment for active boy

Fremantle Early Learning Centre – Fremantle

  • High quality play based learning. Truly inspiring. Beautiful and natural outdoor areas. I love this place
  • Ethos – Nature, Nurture, Belong

Geographe Primary School – Busselton

  • Walker Learning program. Nature playground
  • Helped our very active child who generally struggles with learning and sitting still

Geraldton Grammar School – Geraldton

  • Bush kindy. Walker approach
  • Play based 3yr old kindy to year 2. Bush kindy program, natural playgrounds.
  • Beautiful natural grounds with seperate kindy playground specific to early learning needs
  • Access to a bush kindy
  • Play based learning with stations set up that are very tactile
  • Access to whole school facilites including a library , hall, high school specialised music teachers.
  • Interactions with High school students sharing their expertise and cooking skills in Science, Health and Food.
  • Whole school events (sporting, assemblies, art shows, author visits) which foster inclusivity

Golden Hill Steiner School – Denmark

  • Play based learning. Great school as an alternative to main stream
  • Great example

Good Shepard Catholic Primary – Kelmscott

  • Walker Learning approach. Brilliant nature based playground. Big bush block

Goodstart Early Learning Centre – Port Kennedy

  • has upgraded their outdoor environments, which are now natural and purposefully built. They provide many opportunities for children to connect with nature.

Goollelal Primary School – Kingsley

  • Recommended

Gooseberry Hill Primary School – Perth hills

  • Backs up onto thousands of hectares of nature reserve. Huge nature play or bush play.
  • This school rocks outdoors and indoors
  • Phenomenal! They have a big emphasis on play based, investigative learning in the early years and really make it their mission to make each child feel a sense of belonging and feel safe. It’s a real community feel!

Hammond Park Catholic School – Hammond Park

  • Two outdoor classrooms. Bush play
  • Play based learning. Bush Ply program. Imaginative and messy play in wellie boots and raincoats. Kids love it and learn how to respect and care for their environment

Hawker Park Primary School – Warwick

  • Amazing with a nature focus and play based
  • A wonderful, genuinely play based Kindy. Great outdoor play space and lots of outdoor free play. It was on the 2017 list which is how we found it

Hazel Orme Community kindergarten – White Gum Valley

  • Wonderful beginning to schooling. Old fashioned, cosy dress up corner, big old wooden doll house, lots of outside play, daily fruit, singing and colouring in. Just magic.

Helena College – Glen Forrest

  • Recommended

Helena River Steiner School – Midland

  • I can absolutely recommend Helena River Steiner School. Beautiful teachers, volunteers, friends, family and students who all work together in such a kind and inclusive.

Hensman Street Kindergarten – South Perth

  • Amazing
  • Runs proper child led/inquiry programs with an offsite nature play program. Small classes – very few early years schools like this.

Heritage College – Perth

  • Wonderful play based and nature focused learning environments

Herne Hill Primary School — Swan Valley

  • Has wonderful outdoor spaces and a play based learning style in the early years.

Hillarys Community Kindergarten – Hillarys

  • My son had the best start to his education. Learning through play everyday
  • Love this kindy and the teachers
  • Amazing team. Highly recommend
  • Wonderful kindy

Hillside Christian College – Forrestfield

  • Nature playground and outdoor physical structures in high school

Hocking Primary School – Perth

  • Brand new nature playground for the early childhood students.

Holy Spirit Primary School – City Beach

  • Two nature playgrounds, veggie patches, outdoor bean bags, large size games. A commitment to play base learning in all years and a creativity centre to encourage STEAM education subjects before and after school. School holiday programs.

Holy Cross College – Ellenbrook

  • Brilliant with both the nature playground and open plan classrooms. Play based learning
  • Wonderful school for play based learning. Highly recommend

Huntingdale Primary School – Huntingdale

  • Fantastic for play based learning. $40k grant to build nature playground

International School of Western Australia – City Beach

  • Nature playground is stunning. For local students as well as international

Iona Presentation College – Mosman Park

  • has a beautiful early learning play-based programme. It is Reggio inspired with child led, inquiry-based learning which moves between free indoor/outdoor play all day.

Jack and Jill Child Care Centre – Mandurah

  • Wonderful free flow. Multi age group education. Huge outdoor area, real grass, sand and dirt, veggie garden and play based

Jerdacuttup Primary School – Ravensthorpe

  • Recommended

John Septimus Roe Anglican Community School – Beechboro

  • Pre-K & K, Each person will be encouraged to explore their spiritual, intellectual, social, physical and creative capacities.

John Wollaston Anglican Community School – Camillo

  • Highly skilled educators who run an amazing play based program. Wonderful nature play spaces

Jolimont Primary School – Jolimont

  • Awesome supportive team
  • Fantastic, amazing

Joondalup Early Learning Centre – Joondalup

  • Natural bush environment and outdoor base philosophy second to none. Award winning centre
  • Brilliant
  • This centre is fantastic with nature play spaces and incredible staff committed to building emotional and social wellbeing
  • We love the calmness focus that happens here – such caring staff!

Joondalup Education Support Centre – Joondalup

  • For children with additional needs. Play based is the way to go

Jump Carey Early Development Services – Harrisdale

  • Leading the way in nature play, respect curriculum and play based learning.

Kalamunda Primary School

  • Beautiful nature-scape playground and staff dedicated to play based learning we provide a happy, relaxed, nurturing and welcoming environment for our children to grow at their own rate.

Keiki Early Learning – Mindarie, Alkimos, Hamersley, Edgewater and Yanchep 

  • Their philosophy features a core value ‘earth to sky’ all about their love of nature and respecting the land we live on.
  • Beautiful natural spaces dedicated to learning through play. Nature and sustainability a key focus. Lots of open-ended learning opportunities and a heavily play-based school readiness program. My kids couldn’t be happier there.

Kendenup Primary School – Kendenup

  • Lovely nature playground that the whole school enjoys

Kensington Primary School – Kensington

  • Extensive nature base playground built by the fantastic parents and local community

Kerrie’s Place Family Day Care – Butler

  • Bush to beach pre-kindy program and nature play

Kerry Street Community School – Hamilton Hill

  • Incredible energy put in by staff. Play based and so much learning
  • Lovely play based school

Kids’ Corner Child Care Centre – Munster

  • Advocate for natural play-based learning and our philosophy and service goals mirror this.

Kidz Biz Early Learning Centre – Nedlands

  • Fantastic play based. Incorporate natural materials and exploration.
  • Child led nature play based. Chooks and guinea pigs. Love it

Kindaimanna Community Kindergarten Kelmscott

  • I went there when I was 4 and I have my 3rd child now enrolled there for 2022. Emilia Reggio influenced and uses the Diana Rigg (PLD) program whilst still following EYLF, NQS and the WA curriculum. Kids have at least 2 hrs of play. The parent committee are working hard to get a new nature playground upgrade for next year as well

Lance Holt School – Freemantle

  • Truly amazing. Children thrived there. Academically couldn’t be happier. Intrinsic learning
  • Urban setting but strong nature based learning program – nature walks, beach school, river school, bush school (kids in year 2 and 3 spend one day a week in the bush). So much joy and learning.
  • My son with ASD absolutely thrived there and loved every second of bush school

Leschenault Catholic Primary School – Australind

  • Teaches with walker approach. Great nature based playground

Leaning Tree Community School – Geraldton

  • My kids have thrived there
  • I’m absolutely amazed. So much play (much more than the usual 20 min recess and 40 min lunch), beautiful surrounds, strong appreciation for nature, bush kindy day (campfire, damper, climbing trees etc the whole time for that half day) and a heavy art focus. My kids won’t stop talking about it, they didn’t like their last school. We’re only a week in, but see them continuing to love it after what I’ve seen!
  • The outdoor play areas, the beautiful new grassed areas and open sport courts. Not to mention the classrooms which are warm, colourful and inviting (and void of any tech). Chickens, guinea pigs, gardens. It’s been an absolute blessing for our child. 

Leederville Early Learning Centre – Leederville

  • Even the baby room had a tank of tadpoles to watch transforming, The babies/toddlers sleep in tents outside. Outdoor garden, and cubby house, waterplay, jelly play, excursions. Visitors such as snake handler.

Liwara Catholic Primary – Greenwood

  • Great nature play areas for each age group and more planned.

Little Learners Childcare – White Gum Valley

  • My son loves it. Lovely outdoor area. Explore and try things out
  • Excellent out door area. Weather permitting, they sleep outside

Living School – Lismore

  • My daughter goes there, couldn’t be happier! Nature, play based learning

Lockridge Primary School – Lockridge

  • Play based learning

Maida Vale Primary School – Maida Vale

  • Awesome principal and great teachers.
  • Natural bush playground

Marangaroo Family Centre – Perth

  • Lovely and caring staff and great inclusive atmosphere

Margaret River Independent School – Forest Grove

  • Play based learning approach, lots of bush learning in our frog bog and Nyindamurra Nature Trail. 3-year-old Little Indies program – bush playgroup. Learning about nature and indigenous culture

Marjorie Mann Day Care – Lawley

  • Care, love and inspired education
  • Amazing centre
  • Great reputation in the community.   Inspired by Reggio Emilia

Marmion Avenue Community Care – Carine

  • Brilliant

Mary’s Mount Primary School – Gooseberry Hill

  • Great play based program with a wonderful Nature Playground you (Maggie) opened – that has recently been expanded on. The kids get to explore the new bush tucker garden and the school’s awesome sustainability program includes regular planting and harvesting of fresh produce and cooking lessons including the food from the garden. SO much outdoor play, exploration and fun.

McDougall Park Community Kindergarten – Como

  • Gorgeous place
  • Play based with amazing teachers.
  • Beautiful, natural environment and amazing teachers who love and value play.
  • Educators are amazing. Children excelling both intellectually and socially.
  • Fabulous environment for little ones.
  • Best play based education centre around
  • My child loved his year at McDougall
  • The best kindy
  • Outstanding
  • Outdoor time, fun science, mystery room. My son thrived

Millen Primary School – East Victoria Park

  • Grow the garden, build cubbies, go on nature walks, dig for worms, and paint pictures of what they have seen. Brilliant

Mindarie Primary School

  • Fabulous school with amazing teachers and support staff
  • Huge play area with chooks, sandpit, boat and wooden stage

Moerlina School – Mt Claremont

  • Wonderful school. Strong academic results while allowing kids to be kids. Play and nature are central. Art, science, social and emotional wellbeing. Kids thriving.
  • Gorgeous nurturing environment. Indoor and outdoor play. Bush and beach school
    • Teachers pretty amazing
  • Running a Bush School and Beach School programs for over 10 years now. They are big on nature play and play-based education. They even have a Nature’s Adventurers program in Pre-Kindy/Kindy!

Montessori School – Kinsley

  • Students enjoy a natural environment, with its own ecosystem, right outside their classrooms
  • The children can choose to use a manual water pump when doing jobs outside, such as cleaning, gardening, or ‘cooking.’ The students also use the pump and its creek during playtime, to build dams.
  • Students enjoy a nature-inspired playground during their playtime and vegetable garden.

Montessori Early Childhood Centre – Merriwa

  • 6 weeks to 5 years. My kids love it.

Morwell Street Learning Centre – Yanchep

  • Play based learning throughout all the age groups. Natural items and connections to nature. Outdoor play areas are amazing natural spaces.

Mosman Park Kindy/Primary School – Mosman Park

  • Put great nature playground in not long ago

Mother Teresa Catholic College – Baldivis

  • Walker Learning, nature playground, chooks. Veggie patch, worm farms and beautiful natural surrounding and buildings

Mount Helena Community Kindergarten and Playgroup

  • Strong emphasis on play based learning and nature play it is a beautiful alternative to school based kindy.
  • Absolutely amazing for 4 year old kindy. I couldn’t have asked for a better start for my 3 kids.

Mount Lawley Childcare Centre – Mount Lawley

  • Community-based childcare with large outdoor spaces that promote nature play. My kids have thrived there.

Mullaloo Community Kindergarten – Mullaloo

  • Fantastic start to school. Amazing teachers
  • Beautiful caring teachers who put their heart and soul into wonderful play based curriculum
  • Beautiful play area. Well-resourced and established
  • Couldn’t speak more highly
  • Allows them to investigate their environment

Mundarda Community Day-care – Armadale

  • Reggio, non-punitive, play based, nature loving. Loved by all
  • Beautiful place. I felt calm and peaceful there

Nature’s Atelier – Busselton

  • So many outdoor spaces, set on an acreage, and has pet farm animals to interact with. Created by the founder of Bold Park Community School and nature play expert, Gillian McAuliffe.

Nido Early School, Hocking

  • Based on the Reggio Emilia philosophy, beautiful nature playground, nutritious meals and play based learning – plus so much more.

Nollamara Primary School – Nollamara

  • Cannot recommend highly enough

Noranda Primary School – Noranda

  • Lots of nature play they also have bush wardens club.

North Cottesloe Primary School – Cottesloe

  • Commitment to maintaining play base and age appropriate pedagogy. Long periods of indoor and outdoor play. Time to learn and make decisions
  • Brilliant program and teachers.

North Fremantle Primary School

  • The best alternative style independent school which is tiny, giving it a real community and family feel. Kids flourish there.

Northshore Christian Grammar School – Alkimos

  • New school. All play based. Great new outdoor nature play and mud kitchen. Fantastic new science inquiry playground with pulleys, levers, balances. Amazing school

Nurture Through Nature, day-care – Mandurah

  • Excellence in early childhood education and specialising in authentic Nature play.

O’Connor Play and Learn Childcare – O’Connor

  • Awesome huge outdoors area, veggie patch and mud kitchen.

Olive Grove Centre of Early Learning – Gosnells

  • Unique setting. All play based with natural materials

Padbury Community Kindergarten – Padbury

  • Wonderful play based learning.
  • Play based and brilliant staff
  • Nestled in the shade of a 200 year old Tuart Tree Padbury Community Kindy offers children a magical oasis for play-based, child-led learning and discovery.
  • Here students enjoy indoor and outdoor learning experiences, in a safe, welcoming and inclusive environment.

Parkerville Primary School – Parkerville

  • We toured Parkerville PS last week. Absolutely love the look. It’s right in the heart of the forest and full of nature play options.

Peaceful Rooms Montessori Centre – Byford

  • Non- school programme for 2.5-6 years, very child led and they’ve just gotten a fence for more outdoor play.

Perth Waldorf School – Bibra Lake

  • Beautiful for kids
  • The most gorgeous bush environment for children. Magical gardens. Adventure playground. Play is valued for all ages.
  • We are so happy
  • Sticks, rocks and lots of dirt. Climbing of trees, building of structures, using your imagination, being outside, excursions to the local lakes.

Peter Carnley Anglican Community School – Kwinana

  • Recommended

Peter Moyes Anglican Community School – Mindarie

  • Absolutely amazing. Mud kitchen, outstanding play areas, inspiring and wonderful teachers. Could not be happier
  • Warm, comfortable, natural, non-fussy and loved classrooms. Dedicated to its children’s comfort and interests, likes and dislikes, abilities and needs
  • Teachers go that extra mile. Dress ups, play, laugh and love

Pioneer Village Primary School – Armadale

  • Early years teachers are great advocates of play based learning. Wonderful classrooms and play space. Nestled in a beautiful little village in the hills
  • The new Little Pioneers Program is amazing! Plus nature play and outdoor classrooms are at the heart of every class

Providence Christian College – Southern River

  • Walker Learning from K-2 and adventure and bush play areas for primary school

Poseidon Primary School – Heathridge

  • Kindy program amazing. Awesome nature playground

Quinn’s Baptist College – Mindarie

  • Amazing nature play areas. The kids grow their own vegie/flower gardens. 2 mud kitchens. Big climbing trees, tires, big boulders/rocks to climb on. Mud pay days in Winter. Play focused

Quinns Rock Primary School – Quinns Rock

  • Chickens, veggies, mud kitchen, pond.

Quintilian School – Mount Claremont

  • Play based learning geared to the individual child. Super amazing teachers, huge adventure playground, chicken run and veggie patch. Cannot say enough good things about this school.
  • Kids get excursions to learn all about environment, community and care for each other. Terrific school

Riverblossoms Steiner School – Midvale

  • Amazing

Rockingham Montessori School – Rockingham

  • Recommended

Sawyers Valley Primary School – Sawyers Valley

  • Strong focus on sustainability with a nature play space in historic pines area. Own wetland and creek. Chooks, worm farm, veggie garden, bandicoots. Great community feel
  • A great way to get to know nature and learn about wildlife
  • Amazing as far as Primary School goes. So much outside learning and hands on experiences. My kids are learning while having a good time. What more could a mum want?!

Schools of Early Learning – West Leederville, Nedlands, North Perth, Fremantle and soon to be in South Perth

  • Amazing play-based centres, so innovative, full of features and beautiful indoor and outdoor settings.

Seaview Community Kindergarten – Cottesloe

  • Fabulous teachers. My daughter absolutely loves it. Highly recommend

Silver Tree Steiner School – Parkerville

  • Beautiful for kids
  • Beautiful school with an emphasis on holistic education, mind, body and spirit. Natural bush setting with endless nature experiences
  • Bush block on 25 acres. Kids play all year round inside and out

South Baptist College

  • Big area. Kids love it

Southern Grove Primary School

  • We have implemented Walker Learning from K-6 and have a play-based approach across the whole school.

Southern Hills Christian School  

  • Beautiful school and early learning classes. Set in bush in hills they have lots of play and lots of outdoor fun. I am a foster parent and have children with high special needs and the teachers are just amazing and cater for all their needs.

Spearwood Alternative School – Spearwood

  • Awesome grounds, community, programs and teachers
  • Connection to environment, positive growth of self and engagement in learning. Dynamic, caring and rich community

Spirit of Play Community School – Denmark

  • Great example

Spring Hill Primary School – Tapping

  • Mud Kitchens and nature themed play area. Recently had an outdoor learning day and Australian wildlife came to the school. Very happy with the school

Spring Road Community Kindergarten – Kalamunda

  • An amazing, supportive community kindy that encourages learning through play.
  • A wonderful, gentle and play based start that any child would be blessed to have.

St Anne’s School – Harvey

  • Large nature play for all years to enjoy
  • Play based learning hubs with a variety of interactive stations to explore & discover for both lower & upper school
  • Gymnastics & movement programs
  • Blessed with some of the most passionate early years teachers in WA who continue to keep things fresh & exploratory for our students.

St Columba’s Primary School – Bayswater

  • Amazing team. Extremely fortunate with this school
  • Play based learning and nature play. Foster independence and resilience through play. Lots of messy play and fun. Flexible learning environment. Fabulous school

St Damien’s Catholic Primary – Dawesville

  • What’s not to love about our school. Play based learning, nature play, healthy eating policy, veggie gardens, chooks, fabulous teachers and great school

St Denis Primary School – Joondanna

  • Gorgeous little school with chooks, veggie gardens and an amazing new nature playground complete with old 4WD for those exploring adventures. Great teachers and a great community

St Dominic’s School – Innaloo

  • Play based learning. Veggie patch. Great teachers

St Emilie’s Catholic Primary School – Canning Vale

  • Amazingly talented and dedicated staff in their kindy.

St Elizabeth Catholic Primary School – Hocking

  • Amazing play base environment. Recommend
  • Nature play based environment is wonderful. My son is learning so much

St James’ Anglican School – Alkimos

  • Runs an amazing play based education in their ELC. They have a wonderful nature inspired playground for the little ones in the ELC as well as a separate one for the bigger kids in the junior school. They also have a veggie garden that is looked after by the children. They get to plant, maintain and harvest the garden. Plus so many more wonderful outdoor activities

St Jerome’s Primary School – Munster

  • Amazing play based kindergarten. Nature playground, water pump.

St John Bosco College – Harrisdale

  • Best thing we have ever done

St Johns Primary School – Scarborough

  • Wonderful, close community with play based learning. Fabulous nature playground

St Joseph’s Primary School Kalgoorlie/Boulder

  • Newly renovated Pre-K/Kindy/PP facilities, nature playground and play based learning for sure in those years, following a Walker inspired approach

St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School – Pinjarra

  • They run play based learning for kindy and pre-school. This includes taking the children out exploring through the bushland and along the river that runs behind the school. They recently asked us to pack wellies for the kids so they could make the most of the flooded oval. But it had mostly dried up before the puddle day

St Luke’s Catholic Primary – Woodvale

  • Play based learning. Nature based areas. Flexible classroom environment
  • Amazing arts area and meditation room
  • Blown away on school tour
  • Fantastic school. Absolutely love it
  • Highly recommend

St Marks Anglican Community School – Hillarys

  • Solid nature and play based grounding
  • Play based learning, beautiful learning spaces. Inspiration from the Walker Approach and Riggio Approach
  • Wonderful play based learning program. Reggio Emilia and Kathy Walker approach. Create, investigate and explore

St Marys School – Merredin

  • So lucky for a small country town
  • Love St Marys

St Stephen’s School – Duncraig

  • Purpose built early leaning campus which promotes learning through play across curriculum. My boys love it

St Stephen’s Secondary School – Carramar

  • Play based for a number of years. Great playground in the kindy area

Subiaco Primary Kindy and Pre-primary

  • Wonderful outdoor nature play areas. Let’s not forget public schools who are slowly changing and creating new spaces and replacing old playgrounds.

Swan Christian College Early Learning Centre – Perth

  • Passionate about play base learning. Children making choices, engaging with nature, being creative with loose parts.

Tapping Primary School – Tapping

  • Legend principle and awesome P&C. Learning initiatives around play

Telethon Speech and Language School – Wembley

  • Highly recommend. Play/sensory base and similar to Walker Learning model
  • Amazing staff. Twins have come so far

Thornlie Christian College – Southern River

  • Play based learning, walker approach allowing students to play create explore and investigate. Incredible teachers

Tiddlywinks Pre-Kindy – Wembley

  • Beautiful play based program. Teachers wonderful. Nurturing, educational and beautiful environment

Tiny Beez Education and Care Centre – Claremont

  • My son had two wonderful years there

Treasured Tots Early Education – Fremantle and Bibra Lake

  • Play based programs and nature playgrounds. Nature brought indoors to build sustainable resources

Treetops Montessori School – Darlington

  • Wonderful bush play environment. Whole school nurturing environment where the individual child is central. Happy teenagers.
  • Vote for Treetops
  • Beautiful bush setting with soon to be finished additional outdoor/nature play initiative
  • Parent built nature playground, trees galore, real rocks and lots of bush. Children don’t want to leave. Truly beautiful
  • Tree climbing, construction of dams and walls in sand. Excellent school

Tuart Hill Community Kindergarten – Tuart Hill

  • Great play based curriculum. Lots of outdoor time

Unicare Early Childhood Education – Nedlands

  • Beautiful nurturing philosophy
  • ‘Encourage the wonder’ Meet macca the pig, Yazzo the rabbit, chickens, birds and ducks.

Vasse Public School – Busselton

  • Implementing the Walker Learning approach. Wonderful school.
  • Amazing playground
  • Flexible seating in the classroom

Victoria Park Christian School – Victoria

  • play/nature

Wallistion Primary School – near Kalamunda

  • Proudly play based learning. Walker Learning. Strong focus on outdoor pedagogy and play in bush surrounds

Wanneroo Primary School – Wanneroo

  • Nature play, running creek, chickens

West Balcatta Primary School – Balcatta

  • Amazing space
  • Amazing community project nature space

West Coast Steiner School – Nollamara

  • Beautiful for kids

Whitford Family Centre – Hillarys

  • Wonderful play based socialisation programme

Whitford Catholic Primary School – Craigie

  • Nature play programme

Woodbury Boston Primary School – Halfway between Albany and Denmark

  • Play based, hands on, child led education. Best natural nature playground. Truly fabulous school

Woodland Grove Primary School – Byford

  • Huge nature outdoor playground for climbing and running. Outdoor music. Kids play freely through whole school. Bigger kids mix with younger. Brilliant

Yallingup Steiner School – Wildwood Valley

  • Recommended

Yanchep Beach Primary School – Yanchep Beach

  • Daily bush walks through national park
  • Magnificent nature play areas
  • Positive steps forward. Lots of nature-based play spaces and flexible learning spaces

Also to all who share the concern of the disappearance of play based learning – please take two minutes to endorse the WA Play Strategy. We need this to have lots of endorsements so the powers that may be listen!

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash