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Frequently asked questions

Who Can Attend Outdoor Preschool?

The Lake Nixon Outdoor Preschool is an all-weather learning community for children, ages 3-5. (We will be adding Kindergarten in August of 2022!) We welcome your child into our program as soon as he or she is three years old and able to use the bathroom independently.

How has Outdoor Preschool changed in response to COVID-19?

After going into "hibernation" in March 2020, due to COVID-19 precautions, Outdoor Preschool restarted on July 1, 2020 in a new format, and with numerous new health protocols, but retaining the heart of what has always made our program special. All students have their temperature taken each morning, and parents must answer COVID-19-related screening questions before dropping off their little ones at school. Students and teachers wear masks all day, except for nap time and meal times. Teachers also have additional PPE close at hand. One of the unanticipated blessings of this unusual and difficult time has been the chance for Outdoor Preschool to explore an even larger area of the Lake Nixon Outdoor Center.

When can I visit Outdoor Preschool?

Meet the teachers, visit the indoor and outdoor classrooms and find out what Outdoor Preschool is all about! Tours are arranged each week. Please call 501-744-8897 or email Monica Woods at, as soon as possible, to schedule a tour.

What if it’s raining or cold outside?

We constantly monitor weather, especially on stormy and/or very cold days. We want your preschooler to be secure, always, and we also want to stress the importance of a true outdoor experience. Preschoolers' outdoor time will be reduced when windchill temperatures are in the low 20's, or when the heat index is over 100 degrees. Rainsuits are used when it is an especially wet and muddy day.

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 meal times. We encourage families to supply their children's food in containers or packaging that he or she will be able to open independently.

What additional teaching resources will be used?

Our program covers all Kindergarten readiness skills and is licensed by the Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education. We also draw from many other resources when creating lesson plans, activities and thematic units. These include: North American Reggio Emilia Alliance, Conscious Discipline, North American Association of Environmental Education and Growing Up Wild. We implement the very best practices for our students, no matter the source of the curriculum.

What local partnerships does the preschool work with?

We have working partnerships with River Valley Horticulture, Arkansas Game and Fish, Toltec Mounds Archeological State Park and Arkansas Farm to School, as well as many other relationships through Second Baptist Church and the Lake Nixon Summer Day Camp community. Our students thrive on inviting visitors in to our learning community!

What about discipline?

Our staff teaches and practices the Concious Discipline model. The model centers on the School Family which brings all children to a place of willingness through a sense of belonging. We use connection to encourage impulse control while teaching self-regulation skills in context. The sprit of the School Family reduces stress while creating an atmosphere of caring, encouragement and meaningful contributions. When children feel safe and connected, they are ready to learn and problem solve!

Is LNOP a "religious" program?

The Lake Nixon Outdoor Center is owned by and operates as a public ministry of Second Baptist Church (downtown), Little Rock, with a mission to provide opportunities for recreation, education, and sanctuary for all in this beautiful place. However, LNOP is open to students from all (and no) faith backgrounds. We begin snacktime and meals with a simple blessing--"We thank you for the wind, the rain, the sun, and pleaseant weather. We thank you for this our food, and that we are together"--but LNOP does not engage in explicit religious instruction. We welcome further questions about this topic! Please contact or call 501-744-8897.