"A child’s world is fresh and new and beautiful, full of wonder and excitement. It is our misfortune that for most of us that clear-eyed vision, that true instinct for what is beautiful, is dimmed and even lost before we reach adulthood."
― Rachel Carson: Biologist, Author, Activist
Inspired creation of the Environmental Protection Agency
Matthew Fortin : Founder. Director. Lead Teacher
Matthew's entry into the field of early childhood and nature education has been nothing short of extraordinary! About 8 years ago, during his career as a union iron worker, he sustained a life altering back injury. After years of treatments and therapy, it was clear he would never be able to return to his previous profession. He realized he would have to take a new career path and decided that no matter what it was, it had to contribute to society in a deep, lasting and meaningful way. When he asked his 5 kids what they thought he should do, he was surprised that all of them said the same thing...."You should be a teacher or a coach! Kids love you and you're so much fun!" The thought of teaching in a classroom held zero appeal for him, so he put the kids idea far in the back of his mind. Then, after talking to his wife and walking his property, he realized that he could be a teacher of a different type, and it was out of this, Timber Creek Farm and Forest School was born!
Matthew holds a certificate in Early Childhood Education (ECE), is a Certified Forest School Educator and first generation organic farmer. Through Timber Creek, he engages the children with the wonders of the forest and the fruits of the field while giving them the foundation to build their imaginations, inner resilience, character and a strong internal moral compass.
Matthew believes that all the experiences of his life led and prepared him to this ultimate and ever changing creation that is Timber Creek. Every day he gives all of his heart and soul to creating a space where young people will thrive surrounded by love, understanding and the beauty of nature. In his own words, "You know how I know this life isn't real?? Because I'm livin' the dream!"
Tinneca Fortin : Co-Founder. Teachers Assistant.
Tinneca is Matthew's wife and one of Timber Creek's teaching assistant's. She's an educator and nurturer at heart and has been a homeschooling mom for 12 years. When her husband began to get excited about the idea of a nature school, she saw a spark in him and is so proud to help her husband create and grow the Timber Creek family. She loves connecting with the heart of each child and seeing their joy and growth throughout the school year.
In addition to Timber Creek Farm and Forest, Tinneca is a midwife and body-centered therapist and has a private healing arts practice specializing in women and children. As a midwife, she is humbled to see many previous clients enroll their children in the Timber Creek program.
If you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere. -Vincent Van Gogh
This is our family! We are blessed to have 5 awesome kids that make us laugh and give us grey hair all in the same breath. But to be serious, it is our absolute joy to be parents and it is a humbling honor for us to be entrusted with the hearts and minds of the children that come to learn and grow here at Timber Creek Farm and Forest.
-Matthew and Tinneca Fortin