ELC Cedar Classroom

ELC students practice their balance in the Brim Family Outdoor Learning Center.The Brim Family Outdoor Learning Center (also known as the Cedar Classroom) is a natural outdoor learning environment for children in the Pacific University Early Learning Community.

Opened in Fall 2018, the outdoor classroom features a variety of micro-environments, such as a water feature, stump forest, climbing areas and garden. It's a space where young students  play, learn and cultivate a deep connection with their world and with each other, all part of the ELC's pedagogical approach to early childhood education.

The concept for the outdoor classroom is deeply rooted in research around early childhood development and education. Nature-based learning has been demonstrated to improve creative problem solving, help children develop gross motor skills, improve physical and emotional health, and promote independence and autonomy.

The Early Learning Community is dedicated to providing nurturing, authentic learning experiences that cultivate a sense of social awareness and belonging, while valuing the individual contributions of each child in their community. As a demonstration site for early childhood learning, the Early Learning Community serves not only its young learners, but also the Pacific University undergraduate and graduate students preparing to become teachers and caregivers.

The Brim Family Outdoor Learning Center was made possibly by the generosity of Pacific University Trustee Evie Brim, along with several other dedicated donors.