Oakwood House is an in-home nature based play school located in Richmond, Virginia. Oakwood House is a year-round morning program for 2-5 year olds, where children can engage in creative free-play in a lush Certified Backyard Wildlife Habitat.
The Oakwood House mission is to foster a lifelong connection to nature, as well as providing a rich outdoor environment for creative exploratory play, as a means for children to develop into enthusiastic learners and empathetic members of society with a higher regard for our planet and all of its inhabitants.
Hi, everyone! I'm Sarah. I am the the founder, homeowner, and main teacher for Oakwood House. I'm a lifelong naturalist, and there is nothing more exciting to me than helping others discover a passion for the natural world. I grew up on a working farm near the Blue Ridge Mountains, spending all my free time exploring the forest, creeks, and meadows around me. I moved to Richmond in 1998, and I spent 4.5 years working with 2-5 year olds at Second Presbyterian Child Care Center, a NAEYC accredited play based child care located in downtown Richmond. After a few years volunteering with Virginia Master Naturalists doing public outreach and citizen science projects, I decided to pursue an education at Virginia Commonwealth University in biology. I have participated in research in migratory bird species, vernal pools, invasive insect population ecology, river ecology, nutrient cycling, and wetland/aquatic ecosystems, and have education in entomology, botany, ornithology, plant/animal interactions, and population ecology. Ever since reading "Last Child in the Woods" by Richard Louv in 2005, the trend of children growing more disconnected with the natural world and having little time engaging in creative free play has been of great importance to me. With the birth of my daughter in 2013, I started to reassess what important work I should be focusing on. Unable to find a nature preschool or forest school in the Richmond area for my own daughter to attend, I have decided to get the ball rolling for Richmond.