A Natural Start

for Young Children


Elachee Nature Academy is a fully-accredited and licensed school offering nature-based Preschool, Kindergarten and 1st-2nd Grade programs.

Located within the 1,440-acre Chicopee Woods Nature Preserve, in south Hall County, this nature school shares a campus with and is managed and operated by Elachee Nature Science Center.

Elachee Nature Academy’s inquiry-based curriculum exposes students to concepts that go beyond basic Georgia learning standards’ requirements. The Nature Academy’s small student to teacher ratios allow for personalized instruction.

New Students

Elachee Nature Academy is a private, tuition-based school.

School Year

The academic year is August through May. Classes are 6.5 hours, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. We do not offer extended care. ENA 2022-23 CALENDAR

Enrollment Period

Priority enrollment is December to April. We require a contractual commitment for the entire 10-month academic year.

Financial Aid

Elachee Nature Academy is an ‘Approved School’ through PayItForward Scholarships. This program’s annual application deadline is December 31 for the upcoming school year. Award notifications announced after April 15.

Elachee Nature Academy is a SACS/Cognia-accredited school licensed through the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning’s Bright from the Start.

Why Nature School?

Children who have access to nature at an early age gain a sense of confidence.

Time Outdoors

A Vital Childhood Pursuit


Unplugging is critical for young children. Elachee Nature Academy students spend at least 75-percent of each school day outdoors, in addition to educational experiences in the classroom.

This access to the outdoors encourages curiosity. Nature-based learning allows children flexibility for exploration and problem-solving, which builds social skills, including teamwork.

Students blossom from meaningful, guided outdoor instruction, exercise and place-based learning opportunities. As a result, they are better able to understand and appreciate the natural world around them.

Key Advantages

A Nature-Based Education

  • Gives students a quality, academic foundation.
  • Helps students become independent thinkers and problem-solvers.
  • Encourages students to be part of a group.
  • Teaches students to how to follow directions.
  • Provides students with opportunities to share materials and engage in meaningful interactive play.
Elachee Nature Academy: Educational Philosophy

Elachee Nature Academy’s experienced educators strive to integrate these strategies into their daily lessons:

  • Promoting age-appropriate academic concepts and practical understanding.
  • Providing a supportive, safe learning environment to encourage discovery and experimentation.
  • Offering sensory opportunities with live animals, natural objects, artifacts, and participation in trail games, outdoor exploration and arts activities.
  • Stimulating cognitive growth and problem-solving skills through hands-on activities.
  • Developing physical motor skills through active learning and play.
  • Cultivating social skills and positive self-image through group play and cooperative learning.
  • Nurturing self-expression, ingenuity and reflection.
  • Instilling respect and appreciation for the natural world.
  • Promoting physical, social, emotional and intellectual wellbeing.
Elachee Nature Academy: Indoor Classrooms

Each Elachee Nature Academy indoor classroom is a self-contained, light-filled space designed to provide the best possible indoor environment for young children.

Windows overlook the Chicopee Woods, bringing the outdoors into the classroom.

Open concept floorplans invite children to engage in creative and cooperative learning or to find a private nook for quiet, independent play.

Additionally, our students may access the Nature Center resources for discovery activities, to visit the live animal exhibits and to participate in supplemental STEAM-based environmental programming.

Elachee Nature Academy: Outdoor Classrooms

Rain or shine, the highlight of each academic day takes place outdoors.

Students benefit from guided exploration and purposeful play along the hiking trails and in the streams of the 1,440-acre Chicopee Woods Nature Preserve and around the grounds of the Elachee Nature Science Center campus.

Numerous ‘outdoor classroom’ areas around the Nature Center provide intentional spaces for teachers to conduct lessons and for students to collaborate.

Nature Preschool

For Ages 3 and 4

Growing Up



Preparing for Kindergarten

Young children in the Elachee Nature Academy Preschool thrive from diverse readiness activities that combine experiential learning with nature-based discovery.

Contributing to their intellectual and social development, these activities also help children hone their fine and gross motor skills.

This program follows a loose schedule, interspersed with predictable events throughout the day, such as snack and group experiences.

Primary Program

Kindergarten and 1st-2nd Grade Classes

Busy Feet

Active Minds


Confident, Curious Learners

Elachee Nature Academy allows children in primary grades the chance to ‘find their place’ in the real world, at their own pace.

Spending the majority of their school day in brains-on/hands-on activity, not busy work, students delve into topics made fun by teachers who do not ‘teach to the test,’ but rather encourage independent thinking and problem-solving.

We teach students using a STEAM-based and nature focused curriculum specifically designed to expose students to concepts that go beyond basic Georgia educational standards’ requirements.


Elachee Nature Academy

Choose a Nature School Experience for Your Child

Call 770-535-1976 for details.

Eligibility: Preschool

Your child must be age three (3) by March 1 or age four (4) by September 1 of the enrollment year to be eligible for the Elachee Nature Academy Preschool program.

Additionally, your child should be able to complete toileting activities independently.

Eligibility: Kindergarten

Your child must be age five (5) by September 1 of the enrollment year to be eligible for the Elachee Nature Academy Kindergarten program. Your child must also be competent with independent bathroom skills.

Eligibility: 1st-2nd Grade

Your child must be age six (6) by September 1 of the enrollment year to be eligible for the Elachee Nature Academy 1st-2nd Grade program.

For Parents

and Nature Academy Families


A Critical Success Factor

  • Attend Parent Orientation
  • Volunteer in the Classroom
  • Participate in Parent/Teacher Conferences
  • Attend Scheduled Nature Academy Family Activities
  • Join Elachee Seasonal Events
  • Hike in Chicopee Woods


What’s the Buzz?

Parent/Family Talk

“I am delighted my children have a place where they learn the out-of-doors are not only places to be studied and appreciated, but places of adventure, fun, learning and laughter.”

“My daughter loves bugs, trees, lizards and snakes because Elachee helped bring that wonder into her world.”

“I love the method of teaching and how my son is getting to learn in such a different and effective way!”

“We are so thankful to have found this option for our family.”

“My child says, ‘Mom let’s go on an adventure and see what we can find.’”

“I love this program for my grandchildren. It is so important that our young people learn about nature.”

“I learn from my child every day, and watching her growing appreciation of nature inspires me.”

“Most kids only get this hands-on learning once a year, on a field trip.”