- 15 years experience connecting people of all ages to the natural world
- 5 years experience connecting children to nature through guided free-play and song
When Sarah Grain was a child, she often walked along the creek near her home, winding down through the forest and emptying into an expansive grassy meadow. In her teens, Sarah took a sleeping bag and spent the night in that meadow. One morning, in the misty dawn, she sat up and saw in front of her six white-tailed deer, grazing. She remembers relaxing her body so the deer would feel at ease. And for a bit, they did.
That, and other wilderness experiences, urged Sarah toward a life path of connecting people to nature, particularly in the city. In college, she created an Individualized Major at Indiana University in Sustainable Urban Studies, and volunteered at Bloomington’s Center for Sustainable Living. Before leaving IU, Sarah completed a course in Permaculture design with The Permaculture Institute. During this time she also nurtured her passion for songwriting, which proved another way to express her deep nature connection.
From 2004-2011, Sarah worked for Keep Indianapolis Beautiful as their sole volunteer coordinator and the Director of Community Engagement for NeighborWoods, an initiative to improve community well-being through urban tree plantings. She planted hundreds of trees, and spoke to hundreds of neighbors about the benefits of planting native tree species in their areas. At KIB, she deepened her knowledge of native trees, plants, and actively connected people of all ages to the transformative and healing powers of nature.
When Sarah left Keep Indianapolis Beautiful in 2011, she took the exciting leap to homeschool her young children, guided by her extraordinary wonder and awe of the natural world. Sarah became a part of IndyWaldorf, a local collective of families seeking to integrate nature-based education into their children’s lives. Sarah hosted regular playgroups at her house called ‘Seasonal Songs’, where she and other parents guided children in free-play and orchestrated circle time using poems, movement and songs all inspired by the seasons. Through ‘Seasonal Songs’, Sarah was finally able to integrate her love of nature, song, and child passions. Since 2014, she and other IndyWaldorf families have met weekly to creek stomp and forest frolick as a part of their ‘Woodland Wonder Nature Days’.
Sarah first came to White Pine Wilderness Academy as a mother, committed to giving her daughter the memorable and life-giving experiences in nature that she had as a child. Watching her daughter grow in confidence, endurance and creativity, Sarah became more certain than ever that the most important gift you can give a young child is to nurture their connection with the Earth, sparking within them a deep compassion for all living things and a personal commitment to peacemaking.
Sarah is a mother of three and when she is not connecting children to nature, she is cooking, beekeeping, or playing with her band, Sarah Grain & the Billions of Stars. She is thrilled to explore, celebrate and experience the wonders of the natural world with your child through White Pine Wilderness Academy’s Wild Day Camp!