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About NPD

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Putting nature in play, play in nature


  • Learning and play go hand in hand for kids of all ages.​

  • Spending time outdoors can calm and bring joy.

  • Going for a walk in nature strengthens muscles and clears the mind.

  • 'Greening of schools' projects build pride, ownership, skills, relationships, and community stewardship.

For these reasons and more, NPD begins by listening to clients' specific needs. Every great design starts with meaningful conversations. Everyone is included, from the users to the staff to the maintenance department. Every conversation brings to light how these areas should function - independently and together - to create dynamic, low-maintenance spaces.

At NPD, we have been designing user-friendly and engaging landscapes for over 20 years.

Jane Tesner Kleiner, Principal, has worked in both the private sector and local government. Clients have included local and state governments, school districts, parks departments and single-family residential. And just as important, Jane spends a lot of time talking to teachers, staff, principals, students and community members about how they would like to connect with nature. 

Professional Background:
  • Registered Landscape Architect - MI, OR & WA 
  • Horticultural Therapy certificate, Legacy Health/PCC 
  • Certified Playground Safety Inspection coursework
Supporting Activities:
  • WA Green Ribbon Schools Steering Committee, 2020 - current
  • Clark County Nature Network / Lower Columbia Nature Network - Facilitator, Partner, 2016 - current
  • Green Schoolyards America, COVID Response, Infrastructure Working Group, PNW Design Volunteer Lead 2020 - 2022
  • Children & Nature Network, Greening of Schoolyards - Member - 2011 - current
  • Evergreen Public Schools - CTE Advisory Committee, 2018 - current
  • Vancouver Public Schools - CTE Advisory Committee, 2019 - current
  • Watershed Alliance/Portland Audubon - Backyard Habitat Certification - Design, 2019 - current
  • Friends of Trees volunteer, 2016 - 2019
  • Intertwine Alliance, Greening of Schoolyards - Partner 2017 - 2019
  • Vancouver Public Schools - Lunch buddy, Franklin ES, 2009-2012
  • City of Ann Arbor, Natural Areas volunteer 2000-2006
  • Huron River Watershed Council, Adopt-A-Stream volunteer
  • Clinton River Watershed Council, Adopt-A-Stream volunteer
  • Ann Arbor Public Schools - Volunteer naturalist, 1998-2004
Presentations  / Articles / Participation:
  • Clearing Magazine - Special Issue - Green Schoolyards in the Pacific Northwest - Guest Editor
  • Children & Nature Network - Green Schoolyards District Design Guidelines - co-author (2022)
  • Children & Nature Network - International Symposium presentation Green Schoolyards (2022 Atlanta) 
  • ASLA Climate Action Change Projects 2021 - Green Schoolyards (2021)
  • Clearing Magazine - Ear to the Ground - An Interview (Winter 2021)
  • Green Schoolyards America COVID19 Action - Contributing author on Creating Spaces sections (as noted in sections) (2020/2021)
  • Green Schoolyards America COVID 19 Action - Lead PNW Design Volunteer - coordinating and support design concepts for schools (2020-present)
  • Washington & Oregon Science Teacher's Associations Annual meeting, GOSY - taking science outside (2020)
  • Children & Nature Network - International Conference, Greening of Schoolyards, speaker (2019)
  • Association 4 Learning Environments, speaker, tour lead (Portland-Vancouver, speaker (Chicago) (2018)
  • Intertwine Alliance - Greening of Schoolyards (Vancouver and Portland metro region)
  • Urban Ecology & Restoration Symposium, speaker, poster session (2020) Green Schoolyards (2021), Green Schoolyards at step to Climate Actions (2022)
  • Landscape Architecture Foundation - Steven G. King Play Environments Scholarship Juror (2020)
  • Clearing Magazine - Bringing Nature Back to the Schoolyard (2017)
  • ASLA - The Field - Greening of Schoolyards
  • Washington Association of School Administrators’ Community Leadership Award for the Columbia River region (2016) - community volunteer for Green Schoolyards
  • VanTalks Get Kids Outside… It really can be awesome out there (2016) Vancouver, WA
  • Access Water - School Habitats To Meet Watershed Management Goals - Plymouth-Canton School District partnership with Friends of the Rouge, Michigan (2004)
  • Guest Speaker - Vancouver Public Schools (CTE classes), Schools of the Future, Michigan State University LA
  • Ann Arbor Public Schools - Volunteer naturalist Outdoor Education Program (1998-2004)
  • Watershed Monitoring Crew Lead (Rouge, Huron and Clinton Rivers) - Michigan (mid 90s - 2006)
Past work includes:
  • Clark County Public Works, Clean Water Division - Program Coordinator- Vancouver, WA
  • Vancouver-Clark Parks & Recreation - Parks Manager - Vancouver, WA
  • ECT, Inc. [Formerly Tilton & Associates, Inc. - Vice President] - Senior Landscape Architect - Ann Arbor, MI
  • SmithGroup [Formerly JJR, Inc.] - Site Designer - Ann Arobr, MI
  • Walker Johnson Partners [Formerly William J. Johnson Associates, Inc.] - CAD designer - Ann Arbor, MI
"These areas are a huge part of what Hough Elementary School is all about. They help build self-esteem and a sense of joy. I can't thank Jane Tesner Kleiner enough for all of the work she has done with our Green Team. She has released the control over to the students and will tell you over and over that [the spaces] were created by the Hough kids....The Hough community is so proud of our Backyard [Fieldtrip] and the opportunities it provides us."
- Steve Vance, Former Hough ES Principal

At nature+play designs, we love humans, animals, plants.....everyone.

We work with everyone and provide full service consulting, even if we agree to disagree. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, clients, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, and clients.
NPD does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of vendors and provision of services. NPD complies with all federal, state and local regulations relating to nondiscrimination. If you have any concerns about this information, please contact Jane Tesner Kleiner immediately to address your concerns, 360.771.2925

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