Our mission is to provide a high quality, unique environment that fosters a love for learning and an appreciation for our natural world.
A primary component of the Buffalo Zoo preschool program is its approach to early childhood education, inspired by the schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy.
The Reggio approach is characterized by:
• child-centered learning.
• opportunities for children to explore their own interests.
• emphasis on play.
• focus on nature and the outdoors.
• extensive, meaningful projects.
• caring classroom community.
Zoo as a Classroom
The Buffalo Zoo is the perfect setting for a Reggio-inspired philosophy that provides:
• a 23+-acre indoor/outdoor classroom.
This kind of learning environment is unlike any other. By immersing children in it, we hope to develop a love and appreciation of the natural world that will last a lifetime.
Scott Lawson, the Buffalo Zoo’s Early Childhood Programs Specialist leads this exciting new endeavor as the manager and head teacher. Mr. Lawson earned his Bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education, as well as a Masters degree in Educational Psychology. He has more than ten years of experience in Early Childhood Education, teaching preschool and kindergarten, and working extensively with young children for the Buffalo Zoo’s Education Department.