It is our belief and research has proven, children thrive in all areas of development when given the opportunity to explore freely in nature under guidance and supervision. There are three nature explorer programs that we offer: Monday homeschool enrichment, Tuesday and Thursday Tutorial, and Friday homeschool enrichment. These experiences are all-outdoor, nature-immersed, curiosity-driven, child-centered, emergent programs. Nature immersion curriculum bathes all the senses of children. The child is exposed to a wide variety of learning possibilities that are unique to each child. These skills and mental well-being boosters are hard-wired into the brain at this crucial time and will set the foundation for them to be well-adjusted, lifelong learners.
The state of Tennessee allows for a child care licensing exemption and The Stoney Creek Nature Explorers Program has been granted this exemption.
Meet The Teachers
Cori Williams – Nature Explorer Program Director
Cori Williams is a lifelong learner who enjoys sharing her LOVE of God, Nature, and Sustainable Living with everyone she meets! You can often find her exploring in the woods, hiking in the mountains, or getting her hands dirty in the garden. As a certified preschool teacher, she most recently served as the Assistant Director of the First Presbyterian Preschool Program in Franklin, TN. Cori studied Early Childhood Special Education at Vanderbilt University, and Early Childhood Development at Nashville State. During her time at Vanderbilt, she received the prestigious Peabody Innovation Award for developing a program to help poor inner-city families. She worked for the KidTalk Project serving area HeadStart centers as a behavior and language interventionist. Other careers have included Graphic Artist at a local financial institution for over 10 years, and manager of a local animal shelter. Cori is a certified Tennessee Naturalist and currently serves on the board of the Tennessee Naturalist Program. She and her 11-year-old son are native Nashvillians and are constantly seeking new opportunities and adventures!
Gina Williams – Nature Explorers Teacher
Gina Williams is a teacher with vast experience with children ranging from preschool through middle school for over 30 years. Gina believes that experiential, student driven teaching, creates curiosity, energy, and excitement for her students. She want to create a deeper level of thinking and learning not only to create a more memorable experience, but to lay a solid foundation for her students. She has a bachelor’s degree in social work from Middle Tennessee State University with a minor in early education. In addition to teaching, Gina has been a Sunday School teacher, youth mission counselor, Summer camp director, and education leader.
Gina and her husband, John, have been married for 26 years and have two sons, Johnathan (23 and Grant (20). They are members of Grace Chapel where she and John continue to lead an adult Life Group. When she is not teaching, Gina can be found helping others in need, spending time with her family, working out at HotWorx, doing crafts with neighbor kids, or at the hockey rink watching Grant play.
About the owners
Leigh graduated in 1982 from Middle Tennessee University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Business Administration. After graduation, Leigh three successful careers serving in management, merchandising, marketing and sales. The last 17 years (in the corporate world) were spent with the Xerox Corporation.
Olin earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Building Construction, Engineering & Technology from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1982. He has worked for over 30 years in all facets of the construction and residential development industry, and until recently was the Vice President of Enfield Construction.
Yearning for a simple, more sustainable lifestyle, Leigh and her husband, Olin, founded Stoney Creek Farm in 2005 and opened to the public in 2010 with a Summer U-Pick Garden, garden rental plots, and educational seminars. Having worked for over 30 years in the corporate world, Leigh retired in February of 2013 to expand their sustainable farm and better serve the community. Leigh continues to pursue the farm mission of “teaching people how to grow their own healthy food”, as well as educating the public on sustainable living practices via the Stoney Creek Farm website and social media.