The Child's Element provides daily trips in the beautiful foothills of the Wasatch mountains,
located in Salt Lake City & Bountiful, Utah.
Mindful Forest School will guide your child in developing mindfulness, and emotional intelligence while exploring their own brilliant mind. From creative expression and meditation, to building, hiking mountains, and playing in the dirt, this program is where your child’s imagination will come alive, while continuing to gain the skills essential for life.
The Child's Element allows every child to make mistakes, to learn the process of repair, and to try again. This skill set of processing will then be extended to every aspect of a child's life (i.e. family balance, peer relationships, problem solving, academic confidence, and through their own development of self).
Without the use of most modern technology and toys, your child will have the chance to get creative, and to brainstorm with a team of peers to explore their ideas and creativity, with teacher support. Through this supported structured and unstructured time, your child will build confidence and independence.
Experiencing our Earth's elements hands on, your child will learn with the seasons. We share in the joy that can be found every moment of every year.
Mindful Forest School provides an environment where children can explore the brilliance of their own mind, by stepping away from electronics and modern toys. They are able to experience the natural state of being a child, through creativity, movement, meditation, and engaging with the natural world. A strong connection is made with the Earth, and this connection supports a child’s deeper sense of self, promotes mindfulness, emotional awareness and regulation, and creates a balance within your child’s life.
Sara Wild, Creator & Director
Sara grew up in the Pacific Northwest where she was primarily homeschooled. Her love for the outdoors was established as a child as she explored the vast greenbelt behind her home. Her natural gift with children was seen at an early age and has now provided child care for hundreds of children throughout her life.
Sara's degree in Psychology, with an emphasis on Child Development, from the University of Utah fueled her passion for guiding the young developing minds of this world.
In Sara's twenties she led groups of 2-6 year olds in a Therapeutic Preschool. This adds a unique perspective in the training she has created for staff at Mindful Forest School. Sara strives to provide children with the most needed foundational support in their earliest years. She is dedicated to the work of connecting children with themselves, nature, and their peers.
Chloee, Teacher (Salt Lake Location)
Originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Chloee moved out west to pursue her dream of studying Environmental Sustainability at the University of Utah. In her time there she completed an internship in India at Dr. Vandana Shiva’s Navdanya Biodiversity Farm, worked with Bud Bailey immigration & youth services, and added a second major in Sociology to focus on the intersection between climate change and gender. During her final semester, she took a capstone course ‘Teaching Sustainability’ that sparked her interest in cultivating spaces for child exploration outdoors. Whether in time with her partner’s 21 nieces and nephews or nannying for multiple years, Chloee finds joy in working with children especially when focused on nature and inclusivity. She looks forward to blending her values in her work with The Child’s Element, as a Teacher at Mindful Forest School.
Lea, Teacher (Salt Lake Location)
Lea moved from WA to UT when she was 5 years old. Her backyard in Utah ran along the fence line of an enormous apple orchard. Lea spent most of her childhood there. She'd spend her days with the horses and catch snakes in the grass. With Steve Irwin as her number one influence, she quickly became the neighborhood snake wrangler. Her neighbors would specifically request her for snake extraction. She was only 7 years old.
From 2010-2015, Lea volunteered at a program in Orem called Friday’s Kids. There, she was a caretaker for special needs children between the ages of 3-12. Soon after Lea reconnected with her passion for animals and nature. She has spent the last 8 years in multiple fields, becoming certified as an animal behavior specialist- focusing on wildlife education. In 2021 Lea started her own business called Creature Connection. As a behavior consultant, she offers Canine and Equine Training. She strives to teach people animal language, and to preserve the wild spark in future generations. She believes wild life education strengthens our relationship with the land, and brings us back to our sovereignty. Lea is passionate about discovering the natural world, especially alongside children, and is thrilled to be a part of Mindful Forest School.
Caitie, Teacher (Salt Lake Location)
Caitie was born in Utah, and was raised in the Bay Area of San Fransisco. In High School, Caitie moved back to Utah and never wants to leave. Caitie loves gardening, and strives to be in the mountains as often as possible. Caitie has a high appreciation for what Utah has to offer in regards to the great outdoors. She loves the easy accessibility to hiking trails, and camping.
Caitie is a mother of three, and has over 15 years experience working with children in and out of the home. When her first child was born, she created a daycare in her own home to offer a creative and welcoming space for other children in the area.
Caitie is passionate about children's development, especially in regards to outdoor experiences, and encouraging foundational skills that promote positive mental health.
Saidhnhin, Teacher (Salt Lake Location)
After being born in Georgia, Saidhbhin has lived all over the United States. Her passion for the outdoors started early on, as she was able to travel all over the world with her parents growing up.
Saidhbhin loves spending time skiing, hiking, camping, and traveling with her daughter. Saidhbhin is currently in school studying nursing and her end goal is to be a nurse for adolescents struggling with mental health. Saidhbhin has a big heart for kids and loves supporting children in discovering new things! Saidhbhin is dedicated to nurturing the child's hearts and minds, cultivating good memories with children outdoors, and seeing children smile.
Masha, Teacher (Salt Lake Location)
Masha loves everything about being outside. Hiking, gardening, looking at clouds, everything about the outdoors brings her joy! Masha's favorite place to be outside is in the mountains. With Masha's Bachelors in Environmental Geology, it comes naturally to her that she loves to see the geologic processes that have formed in outdoor spaces.
Masha has enjoyed practicing yoga daily for years, and is a trained yoga teacher. She is looking forward to teaching yoga to students Mindful Forest School. Masha practices mindfulness daily, and loves the idea of teaching mindfulness to children. Masha has worked in schools for the last 7 years, and spent the last two years working at the Natural History Museum in their after school programs that helps youth learn and teach about natural science subjects to their peers. Masha loves the philosophy that the best way to solidify knowledge is to communicate what you have learned to others. Masha has a cat named Circumference, and enjoys learning from her cat about enjoying the little things, such as sitting in the sunshine.
Grace, Teacher (Bountiful Location)
Grace was born and raised in Utah, and has a strong passion for the outdoors. Grace's love for connecting with nature is strengthened through her various outdoor hobbies, such as: Rock Climbing, Snowboarding, and Backpacking.
Grace has provided routine child care to numerous families, equipping her with years of experience in the supervision of children of various ages, indoors and outdoors both.
Grace is inspirited by the ways in which connecting with nature is healing, and strives to share her positivity with those around her, no matter where she goes!