Nature Time, our signature environmental education curriculum, starts early and doesn’t wait for spring. This January, Neighborhood House’s Penquins (Early Childhood Teachers Myeesha & Amelia, ages 3-4) visited NH’s 93-acre Nature Center for some winter hiking and exploration. Nature Educator Niki Espy led the kids on a lively search for signs of animal life in the snow-covered woods and meadows. Attentive hikers found footprints – and a few other intriguing traces – of deer, squirrel, and fox. There was time for bird watching too, as kids spotted a few bald eagles on the ride out to Ashippun, and had lively conversations with a nuthatch or two. Nature Center field trips throughout the year give kids rich hands-on experience in the natural world, and are supplemented with classroom lessons that focus on school readiness.