Animals may provide comfort, an ear to listen, or encouragement in challenging times. The element-i Waldmühle child care centre will be opened in April 2020 and will offer animal-based education, for instance with alpacas, ponies and sheep.

The evolutionary link between man and nature means that each child feels a natural pull to animals and nature. In science, this link is referred to as “biophilia”. This isn’t just a simple instinct, but rather a complex set of rules that depend on the mental faculties, behaviour, emotions, aesthetic perception and spiritual development of human beings. Animals and nature in general appeal to children. This is the moment in which many of the child’s senses are stimulated, making not only wonderful moments possible but also enduring learning experiences. The concept of the element-i Waldmühle child care centre focuses on natural education / the Miklitz Practical Life Approach in combination with sports-based education and animal-based education.

Everything about animals appeals to children, especially experiences with them up close and personal. They also have a considerable influence over various aspects of a child’s learning – including emotional and social intelligence, language and motor skills, self-esteem and sense of community.