More than 200 mostly early childhood educators, including a group from Japan, attended a nature education conference in the outdoors in Whangārei.

The event, from Friday to Sunday, is in its eighth year and was again hosted by Cherry Daly at her farm along Ngunguru Rd, which is also home to her Open Spaces Pre-School Academy.

The aim of the Natural Phenomena Conference is to emphasise reconnecting children with nature and to let them engage in outdoor activities rather than being glued to TV.

Northern Advocate photographer Tania Whyte went along too.

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Seven month old Sadie Lambert and mum Crystal MacGregor check out Lorraine Cross's Timber Toys at the conference.
Seven month old Sadie Lambert and mum Crystal MacGregor check out Lorraine Cross's Timber Toys at the conference.
Leo Young, 11, Eden Ruru, 7, Frieda Fugle, 6, Shanti Aplin, 11, Barnaby Frost, 12 and Max Young, 13 got creative at the nature education conference.
Leo Young, 11, Eden Ruru, 7, Frieda Fugle, 6, Shanti Aplin, 11, Barnaby Frost, 12 and Max Young, 13 got creative at the nature education conference.
Gia Aplin,14 with her dad Dean catch up with Denise Ditchburn in the outdoors at the weekend.
Gia Aplin,14 with her dad Dean catch up with Denise Ditchburn in the outdoors at the weekend.
A large crowd were listening intently to the speakers at the nature education conference at the weekend.
A large crowd were listening intently to the speakers at the nature education conference at the weekend.
One of the speakers at the Natural Phenomena Conference was Scott Duncan from AUT.
One of the speakers at the Natural Phenomena Conference was Scott Duncan from AUT.