Facilitated Wild Play Recess

Wild Play Recess is a facilitated recess model, with a restorative undercurrent, whose content focuses on role modeling and teaching youth about nature. Specifically, wild play hones in on ecological relationships and natural indicators of health.

Wild Play presents games and activities that role model ecological relationships through representative analogues and how they interface with each other in real time. An example of this is predator-prey relationships. As kiddos engage with wild play, they’re unknowingly learning about the natural world!

Wild Play Recess Games

White Pine Programs’ Wild Play Recess Model:

Wild Play Recess Stefan

An energetic game: 

Active games, such as those that invite role playing of the ecological relationships between organisms.

Nature Museum CRES

A quiet and creative naturalist activity:

A more intimate and focused activity that allows students who don’t engage in energetic recess activities an access point.

(i.e. Sense meditations; track casts exploration; weaving workshop; nature art; feather exploration; bird watching; field guide exploration; turtle shell exploration, etc.)

Animal Visits Recess

Hands-on animal visits:

Visiting with animals allows children to create a direct connection to an organism, introduces role modeling of respectful interactions with living creatures and is a reason to get excited (promotes attendance and mitigates negativity).

Supports that White Pine offers:

  • Wild Play Recess facilitation
  • Wild Play Recess Activity Bank Access
  • Designing, developing and implementing sustainable Wild Play Recess models


I do not have any concrete data, but I can speak to my own classroom experience that peer conflicts after recess were nonexistent on Tuesdays and Thursdays after wild play recess!…

The CRES community is so fortunate to have worked with Anthony at White Pine Programs this Spring! Our outdoor snack time has turned into searching for pill bugs, safely relocating toads into the woods, classifying plants, and following ant trails! I have a new understanding and appreciation for outdoor education. I am excited to keep learning more so that nature connections are prioritized in my teaching. Thank you to Anthony and everyone at White Pine Programs!” 

Raina Martinec-Walcek, 2nd grade teacher, Coastal Ridge Elementary School