Nature Preschool

New in 2020! The Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center will be a full-time program!

Registration is now open for the FULL-TIME NATURE PRESCHOOL

Registration is also OPEN for our Preschool Summer Camp: Find out more here.

  • Knoxville’s ONLY full-time Nature Preschool

  • Exploratory Play and Learning for Kids 3-5

  • Low Child-to-Teacher Ratio

  • Outside Play Every Day!

Tuition Rate and Policies
Annual tuition is $9,000 for the school year. This constitutes a 40-week school year, and is billed quarterly. Upon acceptance into the school, a $1,000 payment is required to secure a child’s place in the Nature Preschool. The deposit is non-refundable and non-transferrable, and will be applied to the March tuition payment. Tuition is billed quarterly on the following schedule:
Initial Payment: $1,000
September: $2,250
November: $2,250
January: $2,250
March 1: $1,250
TOTAL: $9,000

The Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center does not charge additional registration or activity fees; tuition is all-inclusive.

2020-2021 School Calendar
August 17                             First Day of School
September 7                        Labor Day Holiday
October 12-16                     Fall Break
November 25-27                Thanksgiving Holiday
December 21-January 1   Winter Break
January 20                          Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday
February 17                         Presidents’ Day Holiday
March 15-19                        Spring Break
May 21                                  Last Day of School

Hours: 9:00 am – 3:30 pm (Monday–Friday)

Ages: 3-5*

*Note: Students must be fully potty-trained, and be 3 years of age by August 15, 2020 to be eligible for the preschool.


The Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center

Want to Learn More?

We are hosting 3 open house events for families to come see the classroom, meet the teachers, and learn more about the program. Because space in the classroom is limited, REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED for these open house events:

Thursday, February 6, 6:30 pm-8:00 pm

Saturday, February 22, 12:00 pm-2 pm

Thursday, February 27, 6:30 pm-8:00 pm

How to Schedule a Tour

Tours are available on Fridays, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. Please call (865) 679-5491 or email preschool@ijams.org to schedule a tour.


The Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center

About the Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center

The Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center (NPINC) is a unique learning experience that takes inquiry and discovery into the outdoors! Not only does this provide an amazing resource for our Knoxville community, but it is also a wonderful way to strengthen our mission. NPINC focuses on child-led, age-appropriate, and experiential learning for children ages 3-5. Most of the day will be spent outdoors, exploring nature and making a strong connection with the environment. Children will learn through play and exploration. NPINC develops the whole child. Not only do children develop a solid foundation for lifelong learning, but they also cultivate a love of nature that is the basis for a conservation ethic later in life.

What is a Nature-Based Preschool?

To be considered a Nature-Based Preschool, nature must be at the heart of the program. While Nature Preschools have the same child development goals as any other high quality preschool, the curriculum and teachers achieve these developmental goals through nature-based experiences.

The Nature Preschool at Ijams Nature Center

Looking for a summer preschool program? Registration is now OPEN for our Preschool Summer Camp: Find out more here.