Outdoor Experiential Learning: 3-Day, 6-Day, and 8-Day Trips
While work on the land and walks in the woods are a part of our daily living, students also take three extended outdoor trips each year that prove to be highly valuable learning experiences. In preparation for these trips, we provide instruction on backpacking, safety in the wilderness, strategic food and gear packing and “Leave No Trace” camping ethics.
Once we hit the trails, students learn experientially about backcountry meal preparation, map reading, topography, tarp set-up, knot tying and group bonding. We begin our outdoor experiences during orientation week, before classes begin, by going on a three-day hiking trip to explore our immediate surroundings. In early October, we go on six-day backpacking trips and we end our year with eight-day trips, which may include biking, canoeing, caving or hiking.
Time and again, we are made aware of the value of varying our routine and challenging ourselves with outdoor adventure and travel. Trips provide students with a chance to be in smaller groups, to meet new people, to learn new skills, and to find resources within themselves. Self-confidence and a strong sense of teamwork are the result. Students develop skills and experience physical accomplishments that most have never dreamed of.