The Educators of Thimble Forest School


Heidi Mckay

Thimble Forest School Visionary

TFS is the organic by-product of a vibrant cross-pollination between Heidi’s life-long passion for learning and children. 

“It’s incredibly cathartic for me to see children in nature, free to be. It pains me to see the limited scope of freedom our children have to learn and explore in our current society.” 

Working with children has inspired Heidi for over 20 years. She has facilitated child’s development in many settingsfrom working in developmentally and mentally challenged early childhood classrooms to Head Start programs, Waldorf and public schools, her roots run deep and wide.

 Heidi has a B.S. in Early Childhood Education and a Master’s certification in Early Childhood Mental Health. She has been certified in Yoga Calm, Brain Gym and Positive Discipline, among many others! 

Formal training as a forest school teacher at the renowned Cedar Song Forest School was one of the solidifying factors that encouraged Heidi to continue her forest school model, similar in every way to Cedar Song. Permaculture teacher training further influences Heidi’s life-both in the continuing evolution of TFS and how she views life’s challenges. 

In her life outside of TFS, Heidi is mom to Lucy, 15 and Tobias, 7, both of whom attend Springwater Environmental School. She and her husband, a child and family therapist, love their life together in the historic district of Oregon City and she is an avid hobby nutritionist. You’ll find her fermenting pretty much anything she can get her hands on! Community is profoundly important in Heidi’s life and she believes that TFS can create a tie between folks that fosters care for each other and for the earth.