Muhammad Fadli, contributor to Garuda Indonesia Inflight Magazine and Jalan-Jalan

What comes across your mind when you heard ‘school’ and ‘education’? Perhaps most of us will imagine concrete buildings with students sitting pretty in response to the rigid teachers. But does it have to be defined that narrowly?

Truth is, time has changed, and both ‘school’ and ‘education’ need a wider definition. This is of course important, knowing how the many advances in other fields do not bring significant improvement to the education system of Indonesia.

Nature school tries to answer such challenge. The antithesis of conventional school, it offers an unusual take. Forget concrete buildings, classes here are made of natural wooden huts termed ‘saung’ where students will not be confined all day as there are many outdoor activities to do like outbound, sports, gardening and farming.

The idea emerged at the end of the 90s but it yet to gain popularity. Initiated by Lendo Novo, a former expert staff of the State Enterprises Ministry, nature school is designed to utilize nature as the source of knowledge. Its quality is not determined by the appearance of the school, but of its teachers, teaching method, fun learning experience and sufficient curriculum.

Bogor Nature School is one of the several schools lately sprouting in many cities and provinces of Indonesia. Started as a school for street children it has now evolved into nature school with hundreds of students spread in preschool, kindergarten, elementary and middle schools.

Muhammad Fadli

Muhammad Fadli is a Sumatran-born Indonesian photographer based in Jakarta, Indonesia, focusing on documentary and portrait photography. His personal projects explore different themes such history, subculture, environment, and social issues. He splits his time between editorial assignments, corporate and commercial works, personal projects, and as a father of a young daughter.

He is the cofounding member of Arka Project, an independent collective of Indonesian Photographers, and also a Climate Change reporting fellow of The GroundTruth Project. These days, apart from being a photographer, he also acts as photo editor and multimedia producer.

He is available for editorial and commercial assignments, especially documentary and portrait photography, aerial imaging, and multimedia productions.