Cassie St. Amand is a passionate advocate for children and their development in natural outdoor play spaces. Spending time in New Zealand, Cassie has adopted a practice that is practically commonplace there and has been diligently working at bringing it over to her community in Toronto, Ontario.
Cassie is a huge supporter of Bienenstock Natural Playgrounds, our stance on outdoor play and learning, and a vocal advocate of play that connects children to nature.
Hello, my name is Cassie St. Amand, I’m a qualified teacher and own the beautiful preschool Applejacks in the heart of Toronto. I did my teaching degree overseas in New Zealand, which is world-renowned for early literacy and more importantly their view of community and how that impacts children and the way that they grow and learn.
It’s been a lifelong dream of mine to have a natural play space for children to be immersed and learn how to be curious about life in a way that’s most helpful to them. It is what drives everything that I do from advocating within municipalities when I started having conversations with the individuals at Bienenstock Natural Playgrounds.
It became very clear that it wasn’t just about these gorgeous natural playgrounds that they’ve created, installed and designed for me. Still, it was about a team of people who are on the same mission and focusing on a shift that needs to happen in North America to provide these beautiful natural spaces for kids to grow and flourish.
Working with people like this is how we literally plant the seeds of this shift, that needs to view the perspective of what’s important to children, so I just feel very lucky.