About Nature School NZ


Nature School NZ was started in 2018, with the mission to get as many as possible NZ children learning from and through nature.  After working in teaching and outdoor instructing for around 10 years, Leo set up and ran the Bush Sprouts programme at Plimmerton Kindergarten for 5.5 years. Seeing the overwhelmingly positive results from children, their families and the community, she wanted to get more children learning from and through nature. I presented at conferences and helped a few Kindergartens get their own nature programmes up and running, but knew she could reach more communities by working directly with Schools and early childhood centres; helping them set up their own programmes and mentoring their staff to run a successful and sustainable nature programme. Thus, Nature School NZ was born to share the love and reach as many children as possible. Head over to our reviews tab to see what past children and their families have to say about their fantastic learning experiences.

Leo Smith

Leo is the director of Nature School NZ and facilitates the Bush Sprouts programmes, Nature School and Holiday programmes.

Leo is a mother, a fully qualified and registered teacher, with a degree in Sport and Recreation and 2 diplomas in teaching; years of experience teaching in Secondary, Early Childhood and Primary levels. She has also gained SKOANZ/NZOIA Kayak 1 and Bush 1 teaching/instructing awards in the past.

Leo worked in outdoor education camps in Australia before kayak guiding in NZ and Canada for 5 summer seasons.  After teacher training, she worked for 2 years teaching at Secondary level at St Cuthberts College and then Wanganui Collegiate at their live in, outdoor education campuses. Leo has worked as a teacher for the last 9 years, mainly in early childhood in Wellington, also at a nature Kindergarten in Auckland and more recently at Primary level running Bush Sprouts programmes.

Dan Green

Dan has years of experience in environmental restoration. He has worked as a Environmental Restoration Officer for Kapiti Coast District Council and assisted GWRC with restoration projects up and down the Kapiti Coast. He has recently worked on the Transmission Gully Roding project as Restoration Foreman, under a private contractor.

Part of his time as a Restoration Officer with KCDC was spent helping volunteer restoration groups, species selection, site preparation and liaising with local nurseries to make sure the right native trees were selected for the specific areas the group were planting into.  This could range from developing an already established reserve, to coastal dune restoration or riparian/wetland restoration.  

Dan is a solo father of 2 children. He has a deep passion for the environment, NZ native bush, camping, and tramping the coast lands and mountain ranges.

He’s loved New Zealand’s outdoors since he was a kid and values the importance of passing this love, knowledge and passion onto our next generation of kaitiaki. 

Exploring the rich sensory experience of nature

Reach Us

Wellington, New Zealand

+27 438 5366


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