Who we are


NaturePlay NZ was founded in 2009 by Anna Gentry and Dean Aplin. Parents to 4 young children, they live an inspiring life close to and in harmony with nature. They endeavor to raise eco-literate children who live lives following there own stars.

NaturePlayNZ established itself as a response to the recognition that "everything is connected, and nothing exists in isolation" and the calling to live a life to assist others to be all that they are.

Working extensively with youth in Experiential and outdoor education settings Dean and Anna discovered and understood the need of our young people to have their foundation in life influenced by a powerful relationship with the earth.

They bring lifetimes of knowledge to educators and parents who want to understand how to work with children and youth as nature intended.

Koru Creek

NaturePlayNZ was inspired from our home at Koru Creek, Tutukaka Coast, Northland.

Koru Creek is 100 acres of protected mature native forest, spring fed waterways, with an abundant brown kiwi and Pateke duck population.

Amongst this forested land Anna, Dean and their children have created a simple life based on the rhythms and cycles of nature. Organic vegetable and medicinal herb gardens, stone, pip, citrus, berry and subtropical fruit orchards. A home for bees, chickens, ducks, milking goats and a herd of horses has been established. The vision and realitiy is to live and model a simple life working in cooperation with nature whilst actively assisting the world of children to establish their own harmonious, and balanced relationship with life. Maintaining and sustaining simplicity in the 21st century is their challenge.

As a living and learning environment Koru Creek has unfolded through the principles of permaculture and utlitises biodynamic farming methods.

Surrounded in the nature of Aotearoa each day of the rising sun brings new opportunities and beginnings.

Koru Creek is used as a base for tertiary, and senior secondary school leadership and environmental programmes