We are committed to creating a seamless, whole child curriculum that moves between outdoor and indoor learning experiences with full utilization of our unique campus learning spaces.

- Villa Academy Outdoor Learning Committee


Preschool Outdoor Education

  • PS Outdoor Education
    Our 31-acre campus
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Watering the preschool garden
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Exploring our lakefront with buddies
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Planting new flowers in the preschool garden
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Discovering our historic Grotto
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Clearing our woodland trails
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Outdoor water table
  • PS Outdoor Education
    Exploring the forts in the orchards

 Our 31-acre campus is unique among schools in the Seattle area. Our diverse landscape includes grassy areas, a multi-purpose playfield, the school garden, orchards, deciduous and mixed forest areas, a wetland seep, riparian forest area bordering on Lake Washington, and waterfront access.

Preschool Gardens
Our preschool gardens are a living science lab, tended by students in our P3, P4, and P5 classes. Learn more>>

The Grotto 
Our historic Grotto, built in the 1930s and restored in 2015, is a secluded, shady stone structure surrounded by trees. It's the perfect spot for large and small group work as well as quiet reflection.

The Orchard
Our orchard is more than a collection of fruit-bearing trees; it is an alternative learning space for our preschoolers. Throughout the orchard, our older students have designed and built forts from fallen limbs and other natural items.

The Woods
Our 31-acre campus includes dozens of varieties of trees and shrubs, within distinct "zones". Our woods are an interactive learning space for a variety of purposes including science, math, and art.

The Sanctuary
The Sanctuary is a secluded open space surrounded by trees. A series of log benches provide a seating area.

The Lakefront
Our campus borders on Lake Washington with a natural lake shore of native plants.

The Treehouse
Planning and construction is currently underway for the Villa Treehouse. This indoor, covered, elevated outdoor classroom was funded by the 2016 Auction Fund-a-Need and will be a platform for a new kind of learning.


Why Learn Outdoors?

  • Physical Benefits
    • Stimulating the senses
    • Decreasing stress
  • Cognitive Benefits
    • Increasing attention span
    • Creativity and problem solving (both academic and social-emotional learning)
  • Educational Benefits
    • Standards taught in a meaningful and retainable way
    • Authentic project-based learning
    • Ecological awareness
    • Seeds of stewardship
    • Connections to food and health (gardens)