ADVENTURE BABIES ROANOKE
Adventuring with babies and toddlers from 6 weeks old through age 2!
The Adventure Babies program of Valley Forest School is focused on a wide range of outdoor adventures with both a parent/caregiver and their baby. This program is designed for those who want outdoor experiences to be part of their weekly routine with their baby or toddler. Spending time outdoors has proven to be an effective tool for warding off post-partum depression. Adventure Babies will thoroughly prepare your little one for a future VFS drop off program.
2022 Summer Session- June 7-July 26
2022 Fall Session- September 6- November 29
2023 Spring Session- March 7-May 31 with a Spring break in April
Adventure Babies meets on Tuesdays from 9:30-11:30.
Location: The location varies each week. Families are sent a calendar after they register. You can expect the meeting location to be within a 10 minute drive of Grandin. There will be exceptions to this for farm visits and hikes. Example locations- Mill Mountain, Fishburn Park, Memorial Bridge, Roanoke Greenway, Blue Ridge Parkway.
9:30- Morning Circle with songs, weather observations, stretches and basic exercises
9:45- Brief parents for the day while littles eat a snack, breastfeed/bottle
10:00- begin adventure of the day
11:00- story time during afternoon snack/breastfeeding/nursing, and a thankful circle
Each Tuesday of the month has a different theme. The Adventure Babies program is guided by a VFS Instructor that is a trained outdoor professional and is there to be your guide and mentor every week. Adventure Babies is exclusively outdoors and utilizes outdoor shelter/picnic pavilions when it is raining.
1st Tuesday- Babies on the Farm
Watch your little one be immersed in farm life for the morning! They will be mesmerized by watching the sheep, chickens, and horses on the farm. They'll help you plant and water seeds to take home and watch grow. Each month is a different farm theme.
2nd Tuesday- Baby and Me Yoga
Bond with your little one through yoga that involves both baby and a parent/caregiver. Every Baby and Me Yoga session will be led by a certified yoga instructor.
3rd Tuesday- Puddle Play
Sensory play is one of the first stepping stones to stimulate your growing little one and what better way to experience all 5 senses than being outdoors? From feeling moss, walking on rocks, dangling feet in a streams, or making mud from dirt and water. Puddle Play will engage all of the senses each week and will be a great opportunity for you to learn your baby's favorite way to play at home.
4th Tuesday- Hiking with Babies
Ready to include fitness in your routine that is equally entertaining for your little one? Taking hikes with your baby are a sure way to get in exercise while your baby enjoys the surrounding sounds and views. The combination of being outdoors, exercising, and spending time with your baby will release a huge amount of endorphins. Hikes will be beginner to intermediate and can be be completed within 2 hours with your little one.
MONTHLY RATE AND SIGN UP DETAILS
All VFS programs operate on a tiered scale for a wide range of families to participate.
You can sign up for Adventure Babies or any of our other programs through our Parent Portal.
Adventure Babies is limited to 10 families.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: What are the benefits of joining this program?
A: Spending time outdoors is a healthy way to lower stress and help ward off and manage postpartum depression. Bringing your baby with you outdoors will create memories of the early years that will last a lifetime. Joining a group of others who have similar goals of raising their children outdoors will help create a strong friendship community.
Q: How long is the program?
A: The program runs in three sessions throughout the year. The summer session lasts 8 weeks from June 7-July 26. The Fall and Spring sessions are each 12 weeks. Fall is from September 6- November 29. The Spring session is March 7-May 31 with a Spring break.
Q: My baby is only a couple of months old. Will it be worth it to come?
A: The time to bond with your baby and create fulfilling memories will definitely be worth your time. Being outdoors building community alone will be satisfying! In addition, you will receive a large amount of helpful knowledge through the classes and gain experience to feel confident outdoors with your baby.
Q: Can another adult, like my spouse, join me when they're available?
A: Absolutely! There is no additional charge for bringing another adult.
Q: I have two children 2 or under. Can they both come?
A: Yes, both children can attend. A second child is an additional fee of $60 per summer session or $90 per spring or fall session.
Q: I see there are 2 designated breaks for feeding/snack. What if my breastfed baby needs to nurse at other times?
A: Your baby is welcome to nurse on demand! We'll even teach you techniques to breastfeed while your baby while he/she is in the carrier.
Q: What if it isn't a good fit and we don't like it?
A: We require a commitment for one season. This will give you plenty of time to give it a solid try and decide whether or not you like it. If you find after one season you would not like to continue, you do not have to.
Q: Is there a drop off program for babies or toddlers through Valley Forest School?
A: No. The only program for babies and toddlers is Adventure Babies and a parent or caregiver must accompany the child. The youngest drop off program, Forest Preschool, starts at age 3.
Q: Do the parents participate or just attend while the instructor entertains my child?
A: Parents are expected to participate every week.
Q: Is Adventure Babies for beginners who don't have a lot of experience outdoors?
A: Beginners will be warmly welcomed as well as those who are experienced outdoors. Hikes will be beginning to intermediate in difficulty, yoga can be adapted to various experience levels, and Puddle Play and Babies on the Farm will both be casually paced.
Q: What gear do I need to participate?
A: A baby carrier(soft carrier for pre-sitting up and either a soft carrier or backpack frame carrier once they can sit up), a yoga mat, rain pants and a rain jacket/suit for both the baby and parent, and layers of clothing for when adjusting from hot to cold temperatures.