Webinar: How We Play: Co-Creating Outdoor Spaces for Black Children and What They Want


Webinar: How We Play: Co-Creating Outdoor Spaces for Black Children and What They Want

Three young children walking on a nature path

Natural Start is excited to offer a webinar drawing from the extensive research of Dr. Deja Jones, Founder of Honeypot Montessori, and the hands-on expertise of Ashley Causey-Golden, co-founder of Gather Forest School. This webinar will focus on the collaborative creation of outdoor play areas tailored for Black children between the ages of 3 and 6 and explore the practical implementation of research in this domain.

Participants will gain a comprehensive understanding of co-creating outdoor spaces with Black children, emphasizing empowerment and understanding power dynamics within these environments. The presentation will also highlight the significance of broadening our conceptualization of nature. We are excited to embark on a thought-provoking journey exploring the development of inclusive and imaginative outdoor settings.

This webinar is scheduled for Thursday, November 16 at 3 PM ET/12 PM PT.

Register for How We Play Webinar

The webinar is free and open to all. Pre-registration is required. The webinar will be recorded and made available to view on-demand following the live event.

Meet the Presenters

Dr. Deja Jones, Founder & Educator, Honeypot Montessori

Deja L. Jones, Ph.D. founded Honeypot Montessori, a nature-based Montessori school in the Greater Newark area. She recently completed her doctoral degree and works as an Early Childhood Education Sociologist. Deja has worked in education and youth development within the city of Newark, New Jersey, for a decade in the areas of case management, program coordination, program facilitation, curriculum design, and classroom teaching. She is a member of the NYC Early Childhood Research Network where she is conducting research with Bank Street’s Straus Center for Young Children and Families investigating disparities in NYC preschool program ecologies, equitable referrals, and inclusive practices.

Ashley Causey-Golden, Afrocentric Montessori & Gather Forest School

Ashley Causey-Golden is the creator of Afrocentric Montessori and co-founder of Gather Forest School. She has been teaching children since she was 18-years-old and still remembers the student that led her to change her major from theater and communications to elementary and special education as a freshman in college. Ashley has been in traditional learning spaces (public and charter), progressive learning spaces (Reggio Emilia and Montessori), and African-centered learning environments in her 14 years of teaching. Her work with Afrocentric Montessori and Gather is a mixture of a labor of love and an educational home for her children that will keep their Blackness seen and whole. She wears many hats as an entrepreneur but the ones that stay front in center are mother, wife, teacher, steward, and friend.